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BTD Spring Mailbag: Dam Answers

Would we give up consistency for great heights? Where is Benny’s wife? What OSU athlete should take up another sport? And much more

Oregon State v Washington
Gus Lavaka- Future Gymnast?
Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

You asked... We answered!

“Would you rather Oregon State have 20 seasons of winning 6-9 games per year or 1 season making the CFB playoffs?”


Travis Johannes- I assume this scenario means we are hovering around the 2-4 win mark in the seasons we don’t make the CFB, so with that I’d go with 20 seasons of 6-9 W’s. The atmosphere is always more fun when the team is winning on a regular basis, and unless you can guarantee a national title win, I’m not sure one year of the CFB is worth giving up 20 years of competitive football.

Joe Londergan- 20 seasons of consistent winning. No question. I get the excitement of the CFP playoff as a fan and what it means for the conference and all that. But consistent winning is so much easier to build a brand off of, which helps recruiting. Plus we don’t want to be the fanbase equivalent of Uncle Rico and talk about how great that one year was for the next two decades.

Leo Castaneda - I’d be real tempted to take the CFP season. The playoff has only been around for four years, and four teams get to make the playoffs each year. That means there has been 16 spots so far, and just nine teams have held those bids. I think if the playoff format stays the way it is, OSU could be in select company as one of the few teams that have ever made it.

If you could change any one rule of baseball, for the rest of the season, to take advantage of OSU’s strengths—what change do you make?

Joe: I mean can we increase the size of home plate? That would certainly help the pitching. Also - and hear me out - four outfielders. Can we clone Steven Kwan and put him at the other one? Just break a bunch of rules at one time?

Leo: A run is taken away from the opposing team if your catcher picks off someone stealing a base.

Marcus: My first reaction was to shrink the strike-zone to take advantage of Oregon State’s patient offense/bats, but their pitching has been so shaky it might not be helpful. On that note, my new rule would allow 5 infielders. Mostly because Nick Madrigal is amazing, but Andy Armstrong has been really good filling his shoes and I want them both out there.

thoughts on the new bag rules for all events at OSU

Joe: As a guy with no kids, I’m fine with it. I pretty much just have my phone and my wallet when I go to games anyways. I get the frustration for people who do carry bags and purses and all that, but I think it’s a small price to pay as long as you know about it before you get to the game.

Travis-I’m gonna have to get more clever to sneak in my Mountain Dew

Leo: I’m disappointed I won’t be able to bring my cooler backpack into the games anymore. I was a downright “prepper” when it came to gameday. I had my cooler stocked with cold water, snacks, rain gear, binoculars, etc. I’ll still be able to bring in most that stuff, but I’ll miss having cold water to chug in between all the yelling.

Travis- At least I won’t have to wait 15 minutes for Leo to get ready after we park

Will Nick Madrigal play enough this season to end up PAC-12 Player of the Year?

Joe: I’m going to say no. There’s a ton of really good talent in the league this year: Stanford’s Kris Bubic, Andrew Vaughn at Cal, Gage Canning at ASU...that’s not even including Trevor Larnach and Adley Rutschman who are having great individual years. Madrigal’s return will obviously have a great impact on the Beavs’ season though.

Marcus: No, unfortunately his absence coupled with the fact that the Beavers probably won’t win the Pac-12 this season are two factors working against him. He’ll still be the first Pac-12 player chosen in the MLB draft.

Whatever happened to Bernice Beaver? And how can we bring her back?

TJ- Bernice decided she wasn’t much of one for the spotlight, so she decided live as a Dammaker was more her speed. Her and Benny have a loving marriage and she never misses a game he is involved in.

OSU Special Collections and Archives

Joe: Yikes.

Leo: We could slowly get her back in the game scene by first offering her a position with the civil engineering department. As Travis said, she’s a Dammaker right? From there, she could be recognized as a vital faculty member like they do at the football games. That could be a good to reintroduce her back in front of a crowd.

Hi there @BuildingTheDam so my Dam question is when will Gill Coliseum be upgraded? I mean I love the place and all but as a beaver fan I think it needs an upgrade. I already know about the new jumbo Tron but I seriously think there’s more that needs to be done than just a big screen. Thanks and go beavs!

Travis-Major renovations would definitely be helpful, but as always it comes down to where does the money come from. Neither of the big revenue sports(football or men’s basketball) have been that great lately, and the Pac-12 network has been nothing short of a disaster for schools. Until someone with some deep pockets come along I think we will see a slow methodical update of all OSU facilities.

Joe: I don’t have any idea as far as a time table, but it wouldn’t surprise me if OSU was trying to make that happen. Personally, I kind of like Gill the way it is, but changes are probably for the better.

Leo: We won’t see any major overall of Gill anytime soon. Once the men’s basketball team can string two consecutive NCAA Tournament bids, then maybe that will spark something. I hope that they don’t do anything too drastic because I like Gill the way it is. The only complaint I have is that it’s almost too hot for me to wear my beaver onsie to a packed game.

If you could pick one player from OSU to play a second sport, who would it be—and what sport would they play?

Joe - Gus Lavaka on the gymnastics team. It’d be like that scene at the very end of Old School. Let’s make it happen.

Travis- I’ve never wanted anything more than for Joe’s Lavaka dream to become reality.

Leo: How about Joanna Grymek at the net for volleyball? Take advantage of her height to swat balls back at the opposition.

Marcus: There’s somewhat of a trend where basketball players can become good tight ends in football and that’s why I’d choose Alfred Hollins to play football. At 6’6 he become a quarterbacks favorite target (after he bulks up a bit). His bio on says his “Favorite athlete is Russell Westbrook … Hobbies are football, playing video games, shopping and sleeping …” He enjoys football AND his favorite athlete is Russell Westbrook who is absolutely fearless and reckless. Hollins sounds like a future two-sport star!

What’s gonna be the point spread of Oregon State/Ohio State? (My guess is 50)

TJ- One spread has already come out at 31. I expect that number to fluctuate some, but it’s probably gonna stay in the high 20’s- low 30’s. I don’t know why, but I feel like we’re gonna cover. Maybe it’s blind faith, but I trust this coaching staff to have the team more prepared than the previous, and while the talent gap will be too difficult to overcome, I could see Beaver Nation being pleasantly surprised with how this team does.

Joe - It won’t be 50. But it will be by around three touchdowns. I know Ohio State and they usually put reserves and young guys in once they have a comfortable lead (unless it’s against a rival). So maybe Travis is right about them covering.

Leo: I think it comes out to 35. But my guess for the the actual differential will be closer to 42.