EUGENE — Oregon offensive lineman Tyler Johnstone twisted his ankle in the final three minutes of Saturday's win against Utah, hobbled off the field and threw his helmet — and it bounced and ended up in the stands.

A fan caught the helmet and returned it to the Ducks.

"I apologized to the fan that I almost killed today," said Johnstone, who is maybe Oregon's most articulate player. "My emotions got the better of me, and I threw my helmet down and it went over the wall. I got it back. (The fan) was a nice guy, and he didn't keep it for a souvenir. A shout-out to that fan for having good hands.

"I hobbled off the field, and I was super upset. Obviously, as a football player, you never want to throw your helmet."

• Oregon reclaimed first place in the Pac-12 North Division on Saturday night, when USC beat Stanford 20-17 in Los Angeles. The Cardinal have two conference losses; Oregon has one and can qualify for the Pac-12 title game by winning out in the regular season.

• Bralon Addison had an exceptional, highlight-reel punt return for a touchdown, all for naught, as an illegal blocking penalty negated the play. (Addison had to settle for his 57-yard pass reception in the first half that set up a score as a personal highlight from the game).

His comments on the punt return: "I saw the block happen; running in fast motion, I couldn't tell ... but I thought, 'This might be called back, but I'll finish as best as I could,' " he said. "I got to the end zone and kept looking around to see if there was a flag. When I saw it on the field ... I wasn't too upset about it."

Addison gave props to another special teams play — De'Anthony Thomas' 86-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, which increased UO's lead in the second half.

"The play of the day was De'Anthony's kickoff return," Addison said. "That put us over the top."

• Ducks linebacker Derrick Malone left the game in the first half with an apparent shoulder injury.

• Matt Wogan, who gave Oregon a 10-0 first-quarter lead with a 31-yard field goal, said he was the starting field-goal kicker for the Stanford game, which the Ducks lost on the road 26-20 on Nov. 7 without attempting a three-pointer.

Oregon's 23-point victory was Utah's worst loss of the season.

• Receiver Keanon Lowe, who had started the first nine games of the season and 10 of 13 last season, did not play. The Ducks did not give a reason for the Jesuit High grad's absence.

• Cornerback Terrance Mitchell made his team-leading fifth interception for the Ducks.

"I'm trying to get my game tight," he said. "Happy they gave me an opportunity to work on my game."

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