Tuesday Roundup: Riley, Kelly Look Ahead to Saturday

Yesterday was Tuesday, which means that Oregon State players and coaches were made readily available to the media for comment on Saturday's game. The game will feature the first nationally ranked non-Pac-10 team to play in Reser Stadium since No. 13 BYU made the trip in during the 1977 season. A win would do everything but guarantee the Beavers their highest ranking this early in the season under head coach Mike Riley. 

There was much talk about the Bearcats on Tuesday, with the Beavers staring at quite possibly their most important home game of the season. Riley was asked if he felt that his team would be facing the best team out of the state of Ohio: 

"We might be. ... this is a very good football team. A very good program.''

Riley continued to praise the Bearcats, this time their offense in particular: 

"I watched one series of live TV when they played Rutgers (47-15) and I just turned it off," said Riley. "I mean, it was like 10 yards a play and then touchdown. ... I said, 'that's enough for now. ... we needed to keep our minds on UNLV.''

"Obviously, this is a big step up [in competition] and we have to improve dramatically to win this game,'' he said. ... "I don't know who we are yet. We've still got a lot to prove.''

"They've shown that they can put up points better than anybody,'' said Clark, "so the level of anticipation is high. The stage is set for us to show the nation what the 2009 (OSU) defense is about and we plan on doing that.''

UC Head Coach Brian Kelly:

ESPN Big East writer Brian Bennett points out that the Big East's record through two weeks is 10-3, but the level of competition has been suspect. This week, the Big East has a lot to prove, as they will play five games against teams from FBS conferences, and will get another four next week. 

The league's highest-rated team, No. 17 Cincinnati, has to travel across the country this week to play Oregon State, which beat USC at home last year.

"We've got to be able to represent the Big East as the defending Big East champs," Cincinnati coach Brian Kelly said. "It's definitely part of how we carry ourselves. We represent the Big East, a conference that continues to build and emerge, and these are opportunities out of the league that we want to win. They're important as we continue to build the credibility of this conference."

Kelly has noted that Oregon State is not the same team they were two years ago, depsite the presense of quarterback Sean Canfield and star tailback Yvenson Bernard. 

"They did not have the weapons two years ago that they do now," Cincinnati coach Brian Kelly said as he previewed Saturday's matchup of 2-0 teams at Reser Stadium.

The biggest difference between the 2007 and 2009 Beavers is the addition of the Rodgers brothers to the forefront of the offense. Through two games, James and Jacquizz are accounting for 67 percent of the offensive production. Kelly knows that these two players will get the ball, it's just a matter of containment for the Cincinnati defense, which lost 10 players off last year's squad. 

"It's a matter of managing their touches, and not giving up big plays," Kelly said.

Kelly echoes these same sentiments in another interview:

"We played them two years ago, and they obviously didn't have the Rodgers brothers. They pose all type of problems with their running and catching. Jacquizz is a very difficult player to defend. And Mike Riley is one of the nation's top coaches. It will be tough going out there."

--Jake (jake.buildingthedam@gmail.com)

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