It was a tough day for Beaver nation. Rumors swirled all day about Jonathan Smith being a finalist for the Michigan State job. Nothing is finalized of course, but many are worried that Scott Barnes will not be able to lockdown a long term extension to keep Coach Smith in Corvallis. To compound matters Heneli Bloomfield suffered a season ending injury against Washington, Akili Arnold was ruled out (seen wearing a boots on the sideline) and Joshua Gray was also ruled out shortly before kickoff.
The Ducks set the tone early with a 15-play, 88 yard touchdown drive that took nearly nine minutes off the game clock. Oregon benefitted from a clear incompletion on a long third down that was not reviewed. Oregon State tried to answer but a costly false start by their retooled offensive line lead to a turnover on downs. The Ducks quickly scored their second touchdown of the night soon after.
Oregon State started to get some momentum in the 2nd quarter when Oregon kicker Camden Lewis missed a 34-yard field goal. Curiously DJ Uiagalelei came out to lead the Beavs next drive despite it being the 3rd series of the game (typically reserved for Aidan Chiles). DJU helped engineer their best drive of the game though converting a crucial 4th down with his legs and eventually hitting Silas Bolden for the touchdown.
DJ ➡️ Sibo all day— Oregon State Football (@BeaverFootball) November 25, 2023
Bo Nix and the Oregon offense ripped the momentum back though; needing just 5 plays and 40 seconds to answer with a touchdown of their own before halftime. Oregon State found themselves down 21-7 at halftime.
Unfortunately the 2nd half was similar to the first. Oregon State’s drive to open the 3rd quarter was stopped on 4th down in Oregon territory when DJU was under heavy pressure. Oregon did not punt the ball until late in the 4th quarter when the game was already out of hand. The run game never got going. Replacing two starting offensive lineman on the road in the last game of the season was always going to be an uphill battle. It was a tough ending for Oregon State’s regular season.
- Easton Mascarenas-Arnold and Kitan Oladapo played their heart out on defense and racked up a bunch of tackles. It would have been a lot worse tonight without them.
- Anthony Gould and Silas Bolden both made a handful of nice plays.
- DJ Uiagalelei and Damien Martinez competed all night even if the cards were stacked against the offense a bit.
- Hovering over everything right now is Jonathan Smith’s future. Is he leaving or will he sign a long term extension to stay in Corvallis? Also why didn’t Aidan Chiles play? What is the future of the Pac-12 and Oregon State football?
- There’s a lot of questions to be answered and Oregon State had their worst effort of the season tonight unfortunately.
- Those 3 losses by a combined 8 points are rough. 8-4 is not what anyone wanted for Oregon State this season.
- This team will look to bounce back and play better in a bowl game and end this season on a high note.