Oregon St. Announces 2014 Opener Against Portland St.

James Rodgers made a very successful return from injury the last time Oregon St. played Portland St., in a 34-7 win to open the 2009 season. The Beavers and Vikings will open the 2014 season with an Aug. 30 meeting at Reser Stadium. (Photo by Andy Wooldridge)

Oregon St. has added a non-conference game against Portland St. to the 2014 football schedule. The game is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, August 30th. (on Labor Day Weekend), and will be the season opener for both teams.

The game gives Oregon St. 3 non-conference games in 2014, with a trip to Hawaii on Sept. 6, and a visit from San Diego St. on Sept. 20. It could also result in a rare, 7 game home schedule, as, unless there is a further modification to the 9 game Pac-12 schedule, 2014 will be a "home" Civil War year for the Beavers.

The move ensures the Beavers will have 2 home non-conference games in each of the next 4 seasons.

The game will be the fourth ever between the Beavers and Vikings, with Oregon St. having won all three previous contests.

The last game was the 2009 season opener, which Oregon St. won 34-7 at Reser Stadium. Beaver Nation will recall that game as the highly successful return from season-ending injuries late in 2008 to both James Rodgers, whose' electrifying 87 yard touchdown on the Beavers' first play set the tone for the game, and Jacquizz Rodgers, who delivered what was to date his longest scoring run at Oregon St, after older brother James took the opening kickoff of the second half into Viking territory.

The Beavers also beat the Vikings 41-14 in Corvallis in 2005, and 51-14 in Portland in 1983.

Oregon St. athletic director Bob De Carolis also announced that the Beavers do not plan to play a 13th. game, which is allowed under NCAA rules whenever a mainland team travels to Hawaii for a regular season game. This will result in a bye on the Sept. 13 weekend.

This is a somewhat surprising decision, as the elimination of a potential 8th. home game will result in a missed gate opportunity. Passing up the available date also closes the door on either a marquis neutral field matchup, similar to last year's trip to Dallas, or the playing of a road game as a part of a home and home arrangement with a BCS or other higher profile program that could fill another future date with a home game.

Either way, it eliminates an opportunity for televised exposure.

On the other hand, the addition of a 13th. game with the compressed schedule necessitated by the Pac-12 Championship Game would mean 13 (or 14) consecutive weeks of football, with no byes, something coaches are increasingly apprehensive about, especially with 9 conference games on the schedule.

Playing that 13th. game would also require the Beavers winning 7 games instead of 6 in order for Oregon St. to become bowl eligible.

Andy_Wooldridge@yahoo.com

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