AV: How worried are you about the ceiling of Oregon State now that it seems Washington has emerged as another Pac-12 titan?
Rvm: Well as talked about with how I am feeling about the conference as a whole and OSU's placement within it, I do worry of course. But will add not sure I would go so far as say UW is another "titan" of the Pac. They played Stanford tough, especially impressive was when it looked like Stanford had that game in control the Huskies were able to turn the tide, and put the Cardinal on their heels for the end of that game. But that said, until they can put the fear of the Cardinal into the Ducks I would not say they are a "titan" yet. Though UW has a chance to do just that this weekend.
Washington St. is good enough to be dangerous, and California is still suffering from quarterbacks with "Tedford disease"; being wildly inaccurate.
Arizona St. is also good enough to be dangerous, but once again folded in a "big" game, even when against an opponent that isn't nearly as good.
UCLA is for real, and Utah is close to it, but we won't see that bear fruit probably until next year.
Oregon has too much speed and depth for almost everyone, but nationally still isn't appreciated as much as they deserve to be except by those who have played them, and privately by those who duck them.
Colorado still needs probably 2 more recruiting classes to have the depth to play to the potential of their best players.
Rvm: Totally a glass half full at one time and glass half empty at another with this one! I love the competitive nature of the conference, especially of the North side and think the Beavs can fit in well with especially how their offense has been performing. But at the same time it is a bit daunting looking at how (almost) top to bottom the conference is playing.
Though by defeating someone like Utah at their place and seeing UCLA have some struggles winning thier game at Utah I do feel better about our overall placement within the conference. The the flip side is seeing the improvement of the Washington schools does make me a bit concerned! Going to be an interesting season for the Pac-12 teams (well for most of them)!
Connor Pelton: The Huskies are ready for their close up. Did they win? No (kind of), but competing like that on the road against a top ten team proved to me that they're for real. Overall, I'm optimistic about the season ahead. Washington State will be fun, and we should handle California. I'm most looking forward to the Stanford and USC games back to back. Bowl positioning will be huge in both of those.
Av: When you look at the Beavers, what will be the immediate recruiting needs this offseason? What type of players does Oregon State need to help improve as a team?
Andy: Oregon St. needs defensive linemen, more for 2 years from now than next year, and linebackers. The offense needs to add an offensive lineman or two, though no more than that are likely to see action for a while.
And speed anywhere they can find it. Oregon has proven that it is impossible to have too much speed. Lots of other people are playing catchup in this area, which means more competition for the available speed too.
Rvm: Well it always seems like offensive line is an issue here, and there always is the need for establishing any type of depth with line to counter issues like this season with the injuries. I would also say that the linebacker position needs some depth and shoring up too, for again with injuries it has seemed a little thin there, but also hoping here that game experience will help the younger guys coming back next year.
Lastly, I would love to see a true Jackson or Rodgers type of star in the making RB, if we could field someone even close to that level back there with Mannion the offense would be scary three-dimensional. From there I think of course all positions would be great to get some other stars, but do feel good that some of the key skill positions (QB, WR, TE, PK, and P) look strong next year, especially if Cooks returns.
Connor Pelton: Definitely shoring up the offensive line. There's just so many problems there, namely in run blocking. That has to get fixed by 2014.