Oregon St. has set the date for the spring game, the first under new head coach Gary Andersen and his staff. It will be a little earlier than in years past, and will be on Saturday afternoon April 18th, at 1 PM, after a Tuesday, March 3 start to spring practice.
The players will take a 2 week break part way through spring ball, for winter term finals, and spring break.
The game* (details on the format haven't been finalized yet) will be televised by the Pac-12 Network.
For the first time, admission will be charged. All tickets will be $5, but the funds are not targeted for the football program; they will go to fund uniforms and equipment expenses for the band and cheer programs.
It will be the first opportunity for many members of Beaver Nation to get a good look at what Oregon St. might look like under Coach Andersen, and hopefully an idea about answers to what were going to be some huge questions, even had there been no coaching staff overhaul.
Most notable will be who will replace Sean Mannion, who has been the Beavers' quarterback for 4 seasons, setting the Pac-12 career passing yardage record in the process? Whether the new qb will be mostly a running qb, or still throw more from the pocket. Andersen has said his intent is to spread out and go fast, but in transition, he's also still going to put the best players in the best position for the Beavers to have success.
As exciting as quarterback competitions are, an even bigger question will be what the defense that graduated 8 starters plus some of their regular rotation players will look like.
One thing that's disturbing about the date, and the time, is the direct conflict with Oregon St.'s baseball game that afternoon a block away, against Arizona. First pitch is still scheduled for 1:35, and unless there's an adjustment, that's just plain stupid.
What the distribution of blame between the Pac-12 schedule makers and the Athletic Director's office is is an unknown, but it makes no sense to divide and diminish attendance at both. The sensible solution is to push first pitch back to about 4:05, and since there's been no television announced for any of the Arizona series yet, there's still time to avert this collision of events that never should have happened in the first place.
UPDATE Feb. 26:
The start time of the baseball game has indeed (finally) been adjusted to 4:05 PM.