GLENDALE, Ariz. — De’Anthony Thomas returned the opening kickoff 94 yards for the first of his two touchdowns, Marcus Mariota accounted for three scores, and No. 5 Oregon raced past No. 7 Kansas State 35-17 at the Fiesta Bowl on Thursday night.
Oregon (12-1) jumped out to a 15-0 lead behind Thomas’ opening return and 23-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter.
Kansas State (11-2) tried to bull its way behind Heisman Trophy finalist Collin Klein, only to get overwhelmed by the speedy Ducks, who got some help with an obscure 1-point safety on a blocked extra-point kick.
Mariota added a 24-yard touchdown pass to Kenjon Barner in the second quarter and ran for a 2-yard score in the third to give Oregon its second straight BCS bowl win after beating Wisconsin in last year’s Rose Bowl.
Klein threw two interceptions and had 30 yards rushing on 13 carries.