The Oregon State Beavers come off a disappointing loss to Nevada ,but had some bright spots to build off of. Arizona may be their best chance to get a win this year as the rest of the Pac-12 teams look like they are hitting on all cylinders. Arizona has looked disappointing, to say the least, but are still loaded with talent (mostly Khalil Tate) and are looking to break through. Here are the keys to focus on if the Beavers hope to get a conference win this year.
Key 1: Set the tone on Offense.
The Beavers need to wipe out the past games mistakes and come out firing. They need to get back to what works and that is running the ball. They have a talented backfield and experienced Offensive Line. This will open up the passing lanes as Arizona will have to stack the box to stop the run. This will allow Oregon State to dictate the flow of the game and the tempo.
Key 2: Pass Protection.
The Beavers pass protection has not looked great this year. Their QBs have been getting hit too much and for Conor a clean pocket is important. With this inexperience, it is important he is not paranoid to be hit while he is in the pocket. The Beavers have shown they can run block but they can’t be one dimensional and bank on big plays to run their offense.
Key 3: Stopping Khalil Tate.
Oregon State has proven not the best against mobile quarterbacks. Khalil Tate will be the best mobile quarterback they face all year and has the ability to stretch the defense with his arm. This is no small task to stop him but Arizona is 1-2 for a reason. He is the key to their entire offense, stop him and you stop their offense. Seems simple but there was a reason he was the four weeks straight PAC-12 player of the week last year.
The Beavers roll into a tough task but very possible win as the Wildcats roll into Corvallis. The students are back and Reser should be filled for this game. Everything is lined up for the Smith era to earn their first conference victory. All they have to do is execute.