Q&A with an Oregon State Site: Beaver Byte


The Husky Football team is in Corvallis this weekend to take on the Oregon State Beavers. Oregon State blogger Steven from BeaverByte.com was kind enough to answer some questions about tomorrow’s matchup between Washington and Oregon State. He writes his blog from the fan experience and you can see the passion in his answers. 

1. What are the strengths for Oregon State?

The strengths of OSU are James Rodgers, our QB Mannion usually having poise as long as he is protected, receivers Markus Wheaton and Brandin Cooks on fly sweeps, Scott Crichton and Dylan Wynn on defense and Jordan Poyer as defensive back and on special teams.

2. What are the weaknesses?

The weakness of Oregon St is it has not been able to have a consistent running game to balance out the offensive attack and make us far less predictable.  This has resulted in too many obvious passing situations and typically a couple of picks per game for Mannion.  Both our defensive and offensive lines are not up to par this year and that makes it tough for the flow of the game to be in our favor.  Our best back Malcolm Agnew has had some fumbling issues as well and has not been reliable for a full game because of a lingering off and on hamstring issue.

3. Who do you see as a matchup problem for the Husky defense? 

The matchup problem will be covering our receivers and the occasional fly sweep.  If UW can hold OSU to poor production on 1st down they will be well served and get our offense off the field quicker.  We have had problems in the red zone so as long as the Husky D can keep us to field goals and doesn’t give up the easy 7 points too often they should be able to keep OSU from taking too much of a lead at any point.

4. How do the Beaver fans treat this game going in? Easy win? Tough Game?

Most Beaver fans think this game is about 50-50.  I think that is being a little generous to OSU.  We have been poor at stopping the run or making quicker adjustments.  It is Senior Day and OSU expects James Rodgers to become the all time leading receiver in OSU History this weekend surpassing Mike Hass.  We should have “stacked the box” against Utah and made their rookie QB beat us through the air but failed to adjust until halftime.  We did not defend the run much better against Cal.  Polk should be able to run for close to 200 yards if they keep at it.  With Nick Montana starting I think UW will have trouble from time to time in sustaining drives but overall I have respect for the UW talent and expect Polk to get into the endzone a couple times.  Poyer is our best DB but others can be susceptible and Nick should throw for at least one TD as well.

5. Is Coach Riley on the hot seat? Even more so if Oregon State loses?

Riley is currently #6 on the Coaches Hot Seat list.  He has been as high as #3 this year.  His winning % in his last 17 games is .176, only winning 3 of the last 17.  That is pretty horrendous.  There is growing discontent about a ridiculous lifetime contract he received that extends him a year for every 6-6 or better season and also provides a raise.  This was based off of “being close” a couple of years even though in 2009 we ended up in the 5th place Las Vegas Bowl and got dominated by BYU in an ugly loss.  Riley has not shown he can get consistent performance from his players and they just don’t seem to be playing with a high passion to win.  The local press says he is safe for now but will be on a very hot seat if he doesn’t win around 6 games next year.  This offseason many fans think our OC Danny Langsdorf and DC Mark Banker should be demoted or fired.  They both seem to not be very innovative and after as poor as Riley and Co. have done for the bulk of the last 2 years there should be some accountability.  Our AD Bob De Carolis is involved because of his sweet deal to Riley, but he has refused to discuss any football related issues until the offseason as he knows the losing has gotten pretty bad and the situation is upsetting the fanbase.  He really should tell Riley that some coordinator changes would be in the program’s best interest but the buddy system is so tight at OSU us fans don’t know if changes will come soon enough.

6. What is your prediction for the game?

My prediction is UW 27,  OSU 17.  I don’t believe OSU shows enough true fight from start to finish and UW will be good enough and more consistent on offense to take the day.  The balanced UW attack is more than what OSU currently has shown.  We did beat WSU at CenturyLink Field convincingly and that day we showed pretty good committment to balance the offense with the run.  We need to stay committed in this game too.  Agnew is a pretty good RB but he simply has not gotten enough touches or been used on every drive to the level he needs to be.  Terron Ward is our 2nd back but he doesn’t hit the hole as fast.   We also should do atleast 8-10 plays off the fly sweep package since we have had some success off it and get more consistent yardage from it then we have off many traditional running plays.  Unless we cause a couple UW turnovers and our D and offense are both fully into this game I expect the Huskies to come out ahead.  If we truly come to play from the start then OSU is plenty capable of earning the W and sweeping the Washington teams.

Thanks Steven!