TMG NEWSMAKER OF THE WEEK: Justin Herbert
He has done everything that has been asked of him--and a little more.
Were it not for his presence--which came as a surprise to more than a few people since he had a chance to move to the National Football League at the end of last season--the Oregon Ducks would be further in the shadows than they already are in terms of contending for a national championship.
Yet, Oregon is still a contender--for a Rose Bowl slot at the very least--if not more because Justin Herbert is their starting quarterback.
Herbert's latest accomplishments--4 TDs for 280 yards--came in last week's dramatic 35-31 come-from behind Oregon victory over Washington in what was basically a Pac-12 elimination game in terms of a Final Four berth for the Pac 12.
Oregon's victory, which includes only a 27-21 opening game loss to Auburn, kept the Ducks in contention.
It probably should have kept the 6-foot-6 inch, 233 pound Herbert in the Heisman Trophy race as well--a 21-1 TD to interception ratio for 1,882 yards in half a season are credible numbers, but the Ducks do not have enough prime time exposures remaining on their schedule to make Herbert a viable contender.
But that is not an issue for Herbert right now. He wants to get Oregon to the next level--a Final Four--and he also wants to win a Pac-12 title.
The win over Washington was an example of what Herbert can and has done.
Down 14 points in the second half to their arch rivals, Oregon, led by Herbert, climbed back , pulling to within 3 points (31-28) at the end of the third quarter.
Faced with one more challenge, Herbert completed his 4 TD pass afternoon with a 5-yard scoring pass to Jaylon Redd with 5:10 left to give Oregon back a lead, which it would not squander (as it did in its only loss against Auburn).
For that effort and for the chance to continue the chase, Herbert is TMG's Newsmaker of The Week.