EUGENE, Ore. — Washington State’s persistence in keeping front-line players on the field in the final minutes of a blowout loss at Oregon on Saturday night, and the Cougars throwing the ball until the end, drew the ire of Oregon defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti.
“I am kind of stunned he would keep his quarterback and crew in there,” Aliotti told reporters after Oregon’s 62-38 victory. “And still, he threw the ball with 20 seconds left. But he did. They want stats, they got stats. But we got the most important stat, and that’s the ‘W,’ and we are happy about that.”
Aliotti called it “total B.S. that he threw the ball at the end of the game like he did. And you can print that and you can send it to him, and he can comment, too. I think it’s low-class and it’s B.S. to throw the ball when the game is completely over against our kids that are basically our scout team.”
The Cougars, after trailing 34-24 at halftime, allowed 28 straight second-half points and fell behind 62-24 midway through the fourth quarter. Starter Connor Halliday stayed in and directed two more scoring drives, the final one culminating with 11 seconds left. Halliday tied an NCAA record with 58 completions and broke the NCAA mark with 89 attempted passes. His 557 yards passing was a school record.
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“I don’t criticize other teams or coaches,” Leach said in a text Sunday evening. “I focus on coaching my team.”