Heading into Thursday’s clash against Utah, Oregon State forward Tres Tinkle ranks second on the program’s all-time scoring list behind none other than legendary point guard Gary Payton, who holds the first place mark with 2,172 points.
Sitting at 2,097 points for his own career, Tinkle finds himself 75 points shy of Payton’s record with seven games left on the Beavers regular season slate.
If Tinkle sticks to his current average of 19.0 PPG, some basic arithmetic tells me that he’ll reach the mark in 3.94 games, placing his early shot at breaking the record during the squad’s road trip to the Grand Canyon State. On next Thursday, February 20th, Oregon State will battle Arizona, followed by a Saturday, February 22nd clash at Arizona State.
If not accomplished then, Oregon State travels to Eugene to face off with rival Oregon on Thursday, February 27th, which would set up quite the occasion for the record to be broken. Unfortunately, it’s doubtful that the mark will be broken at Gill Coliseum, as the Beavers don’t return home until Thursday, March 5th, in the team’s second-to-last game of the regular season.
However, regardless of whatever happens to Tinkle and the record, the impending end of the star forward’s career sits on the horizon.
With a minimum of eight games (7 regular season, 1 Pac-12 Tournament) left in his final season, how will the son of the current head coach’s legacy in Corvallis be defined? Will Tinkle be remembered as he should, as a dynamic scorer and willng defender, who could carry his team on any given night? Or will the lackluster nature of the program during his stay always overshadow him, causing some to not put him on par with the likes of Payton during his collegiate days?
While it’s all well and good to think about those type of things, the focus for the Beavers team needs to be Utah on Thursday and finding a way to snag their 15th win of the campaign.
As for Tinkle, well he just needs to go about his business as usual and keep hold of himself as one of the top candidates in the race for Pac-12 Player of the Year.