Eugene, Ore. • Utah’s Darren Carrington II owns a diploma from the school that allowed him to post the most receiving yards against a Pac-12 opponent in his career.
Carrington caught nine passes for 130 yards Saturday, moving closer to Ute season records in his only year in the program. But his former Oregon teammates wouldn’t let him fully enjoy the homecoming game, with the Ducks taking a 41-20 victory.
In something resembling a basketball tradition, Carrington was booed every time he touched the ball — which was fairly often. The Oregon fans liked the outcome of Carrington’s most memorable play, though, as defensive back Ugochukwu Amadi forced a fumble that he returned for a 47-yard touchdown in the second quarter.
A review about whether Carrington’s knee was down failed to reverse the call. A similar thing happened after he was ruled to have landed out of bounds after a would-be catch for a first down in Oregon territory in the fourth quarter as Utah trailed 27-13.
“On the replay, my foot was down the whole time,” Carrington contended.
Afterward, dozens of Carrington’s former teammates lined up to greet him on the field, with some of them posing for photos.
Several staff members, including first-year Oregon coach Willie Taggart – who dismissed him from the program in July after a DUI arrest – also spoke with him.
Carrington had “fun playing against them,” he said. The Ducks knew he would compile some healthy numbers Saturday, but they were determined to keep him from scoring a touchdown. They succeeded, with Carrington’s friend Arrion Springs outjumping him and deflecting a pass in the end zone in the second quarter.
Carrington had launched that drive (which ended with a field goal) by turning Tyler Huntley’s pass into a 46-yard gain, his longest reception of the season.
Ute coach Kyle Whittingham thought Carrington deserved better treatment from fans.
“That’s the nature of the world, I guess,” he said. “That’s how we operate. It’s too bad, but he’s a good kid and he played hard.”