The college football season will finally resume for Oregon State this Saturday. They face off against Idaho State in the 2016 season's home opener. It's been two weeks since the Beavers last took the field. And while that game didn't go the Beavers way, this match-up is an opportunity for the Beavers to prepare for Boise State and a string of upcoming conference games.
Predictions show Oregon State is the heavy favorite and have them winning anywhere from 31 to 49 points. There last match-up went in the Beavers favor as OSU drubbed ISU 61-10, in 2007. Also, Idaho State has dropped 25 straight games against FBS teams since 2000. But, what else can Oregon State use to their benefit in order to put this one away with confidence? The answer to that question can be found by running through the numbers.
Oregon State vs. Minnesota Statistics
+Garretson 25-40, 62.5% completion rate, 228 yards, 3 touchdowns.
+Nall: 13 carries for 71 yards. 8 catches for 80 yards.
+Seth Collins: 5 receptions for 57 yards.
+Noah Togoai: 5 receptions for 32 yards. 1 touchdown catch.
+Tim Cook: 12 yard reception for 1 touchdown.
+Victor Bolden: 1 touchdown catch.
Defense:+Xavier Crawford: 8 tackles.
+Devin Chappell: 1 tackle for loss.
+Manase Hungalu: 1 pass deflection.
Positive notes on the Minnesota game:
+Offense was able to generate 317 yards and 3 touchdowns through the air.
+Defensive linebackers held down the passing lanes.
+Secondary unit was able to effectively defend against the pass limiting Minnesota to 130 yards.
+Thirds down efficiency 10-19
Negative areas of the Minnesota game:
-Offensive line struggled to protect Garretson (sacked 4 times causing 2 lost fumbles).
-34 rushing attempts resulted in only 89 total yards.
-Fourth down efficiency 0-2.
-Defense had a difficult time stopping the running game resulting in 125 rushing yards for Minnesota.
Idaho State Statistics
+Sophomore QB Tanner Gueller: 59.2% pass completion. 397 yards. 3 touchdowns. 1 interception.
+KW Williams has hauled in 7 catches for 134 yards and 2 touchdowns.
+Josh Cooks and Hagen Graves combined have 20 catches and and 161 receiving yards.
+Hayden Stout has 13 tackles, 1 sack, and 2 pass breakups.
+Joe Martin leads with 18 tackles, 1 interception and 1 pass breakup.
+Tate Razor has 1.5 sacks.
+Ryan Shields has 1 interception.
If both teams look closely matched, remember that Idaho State’s current record is 1-1. The Bengals won their first game 47-3 at home against Simon Fraser, a Division II School. The loss that followed was on the road against Colorado where they were routed 56-7. Almost all of their collective offensive and defensive stats are a result of that first game against a team named Simon Fraser. Oregon State's numbers in contrast were all earned in a single game, against a solid Big Ten team.
Anticipations for the Game:
- First home game of the season after a BYE week. Fan support and the extra time will go a long ways in enhancing Oregon State's performance.
- Both teams favor the pass heavily. The pigskin will spend most of it's time in the air, like a beach ball at a graduation ceremony.
- The Beavers secondary unit proved themselves to be capable against Minnesota. Expect a repeat performance this time around against Idaho State.
Keys Improvements to Look For:
- The Beavers O-line MUST prove they can protect Garretson against the pass-rush. Very few QB’s have the durability to get hit as much as he did last game a second time around and escape without injury.
- Defensive line needs to put pressure on the Bengals QB Tanner Gueller. Give him time and he will throw; Oregon State’s backfield can't do all the work. Defending against the run is another area they need to tighten up on.
- Idaho State’s Big Sky Conference record last year was 2-9; the same as the Beavers Pac 12 conference record.
- Oregon State announced last week that Christian Wallace, a 4 star recruit and top athlete will join the team after being cleared. After going through individual drills yesterday it has not yet been determined if he will play this year. If he does suit up, it's worth noting he was an accomplished cornerback and running back during his high school years.
The Big Picture:
Gary Anderson and the team will work on ironing out the wrinkles in their O-line and D-line, as well as their offensive efficiency this game. At home they'll put on a good show for the fans while Idaho State forces plays that will keep Oregon State honest. The Beavers will earn their first win of the season by a slightly closer margin than predicted.