The Beavers much-maligned defense faced a tough task Friday night. Oklahoma State’s offense features two incredible playmakers (Chuba Hubbard and Tylan Wallace) and despite breaking in a new freshman quarterback their offense was up to the task of winning a shootout. The Cowboys rolled, racking up 555 yards of offense. Oregon State did their own damage offensively (448 yards); but it wasn’t enough to keep up on the scoreboard. The Beavers will start their season with a 16-point loss (52-36) in a very offensively minded Big 12 type game. Here’s how it happened:
The Beavers started off hot from the opening kickoff. Champ Flemings had a nice kick return and the offense quickly got into a groove. On the opening drive, Jermar Jefferson found easy running lanes and the pass game was firing on all cylinders. The drive was capped off with a 29-yard touchdown catch by Isaiah Hodgins.
Oklahoma State quickly answered as they trotted out the freshman Spencer Sanders over the senior Dru Brown. Sanders wasn’t asked to do too much at first, as Oregon State had trouble stopping Chuba Hubbard and the Cowboys rushing attack. Oklahoma State scored on their next five drives (4 TDs & 1 FG). Tylan Wallace, Chuba Hubbard and Spencer Sanders all proved to be dangerous. Oregon State’s offense couldn’t keep pace, but they did manage a touchdown just before the half. A questionable decision to go for two failed and the Beavers trailed 31-16 headed into the break.
Unfortunately halftime did not rejuvenate the defense as Oklahoma State immediately marched down the field to take a 38-16 lead. The Beavers did their best to match the Cowboys offensive firepower, but Oklahoma State only punted twice the entire game and had zero turnovers. The team kept battling and the offense had some nice moments throughout the game though. For the last series of the game the coaching staff brought in Tristan Gebbia who lead a nice drive and threw a strike to Kolby Taylor with just over a minute left in the game to end the scoring for both teams.
Things I liked...
- Isaiah Hodgins was a monster tonight (170 yards, 2 TDs)! Also, Tyjon Lindsey looked better than I expected hauling in eight receptions and a touchdown. Jake Luton wasn’t perfect, but he made some nice throws.
- The defense had more tackles for loss than I expected. Addison Gumbs, Shawn Wilson and Omar Speights all had some strong moments early.
- Watching college football again. The Beaver defense was obviously frustrating to watch, but watching college football again was awesome. Props to Oklahoma State’s offense.
Things I didn’t like...
- Third down defense. Overall the defense left a lot to be desired, but they forced Oklahoma State into a number of third and longs and couldn’t capitalize. The Cowboys converted 10/13 on 3rd down (77%); the Beaver defense needs to execute and get off the field on 3rd down.
- The defenses inability to get off blocks and make plays in the run game. Despite giving up 52 points and over 352 yards on the ground, Oregon State’s defense did show flashes of improvement. But far too often the Cowboys were able to set the edge and let their talented playmakers get out in open space.
- Jack Colletto running the wildcat. It wasn’t a total bust because he scored a touchdown in the second half, but overall I think it’s getting too predictable. Let Colletto focus on defense/special teams and leave the running to one of the Beavs talented RBs.
The Beavers will now head to Hawaii to take on the Rainbow Warriors who are coming off a thrilling victory against the Arizona Wildcats. Oregon State’s defense will have to regroup fast if they want to slow down another high-flying offense.