Oregon wide receiver De'Anthony Thomas returned the opening kick for a touchdown and the Oregon Ducks never looked back, running away from the Kansas State Wildcats in a 35-17 victory in the 2013 Fiesta Bowl. Kansas State, which trailed the Ducks 15-0 at the end of the first quarter, put together ten unanswered points in the second half. However, Wildcats kicker Anthony Cantele missed a field goal with one minute left in the first half, and Oregon embarked on a five-play, 77-yard touchdown drive that took just 45 seconds to build a 22-10 halftime lead. The Ducks added ten more points in the third quarter, and the game was effectively over.
Kenjon Barner was crucial to the Oregon attack, running 29 times for 142 yards. After struggling through most of the first half, Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota eventually found his form, completing 12 of his 24 pass attempts for 166 yards and two touchdowns. Mariota added 60 yards on 11 rushing attempts.
Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein, playing in his final collegiate game, completed 17 of 32 passing attempts for 151 yards and a score. Klein, whose prolific dual-threat game made him a Heisman Trophy frontrunner for much of the season, struggled on the ground against the Oregon defense, rushing 13 times for just 30 yards. The Kansas State offense, which averaged 411.3 yards per game during the regular season, was held to just 283 yards Thursday night.
Oregon (12-1) now waits as head coach Chip Kelly takes interviews for NFL vacancies. Kansas State (11-2) has no such problem.