EUGENE, Ore. – This No. 1 had no problem.
Darron Thomas threw for a career-high 308 yards and three touchdowns and Oregon pounded UCLA 60-13 Thursday night in its first game as the top-ranked team in the country.
The Ducks’ victory stopped a run of losses for the No. 1 team. Alabama lost to South Carolina two weekends ago and Ohio State lost at Wisconsin last week.
LaMichael James, the nation’s top rusher, finished 123 yards and two TDs on the ground for Oregon (7-0, 4-0 Pacific-10 Conference) after spending part of the first quarter on the sideline with an apparent injury. Reserve Remene Alston ran for three scores.
The last time the No. 1 team in the Associated Press Top 25 lost in three consecutive weeks was November 1960, when Iowa, Minnesota and Missouri all fell.
The Bruins (3-4, 1-3) were without quarterback Kevin Prince, who did not suit up against the Ducks because of a knee injury. He was replaced by Richard Brehaut, who completed 16 of 23 passes for 159 yards.
James, getting increasing Heisman buzz, went down late in the first with what appeared to be an ankle injury. But he returned before long.
James, who was averaging 169.6 yards per game, increased his total for the season to 971 yards in six games. It was the sophomore’s 14th game with at least 100 yards.
UCLA leads the series against Oregon 39-24, but the Ducks have won the last three. The Bruins’ last win over a No. 1 team came While the Ducks were No. 1 in the AP media poll, they were ranked No. 2 in the first BCS rankings released this past Sunday, behind Oklahoma.