Beavers keep momentum rolling.
Another week, another victory for the Oregon State Beavers, who are quickly climbing the ranks of unbeaten teams in the FBS.
After this past weekend’s win against Washington State, OSU found themselves sitting at 10th in the country (according the the AP), the highest any Beaver team has been ranked while under Mike Riley’s watch.
For the past two weeks the offense had been operating on all cylinders, quarterback Sean Mannion had set career bests in single game passing yardage in consecutive games and OSU’s defense was able to stymie opposing offenses just enough to push the Beavers to victory.
Saturday’s game against Washington State, however, showed that even when the offense doesn’t show up, the defense is more than capable of controlling the game.
Offensive Game Ball
It was starting to look as though Sean Mannion would just be a shoe-in each week to take home the offensive game ball, but his play against WSU brought him back down to earth, for this week, anyway.
I’m giving the game ball recognition to wideout Markus Wheaton, Oregon State’s bona fide No. 1 receiver.
Entering the game, Wheaton, along with his partner in crime Brandin Cooks, had been torching opposing defenses, and had begun garnering national attention.
This week, Wheaton continued his outstanding play, reeling in nine receptions for 95 yards, to go along with one touchdown.
The touchdown capped off the opening drive of the second half, and was Oregon State’s first touchdown on the day.
After looking rather pedestrian through two quarters, Markus Wheaton, and the OSU offense took just under six minutes off the clock and methodically drove 75 yards in 10 plays against WSU’s defense. Wheaton’s touchdown helped set the tone of the second half, and let the Cougars know that Oregon State was not in the mood for getting upset.
The nine receptions puts Wheaton at 36 for the year, and the touchdown pushes that tally to 4 through just four games.
Defensive Game Ball
There are plenty of kudos to go around this week on the Beavers’ defense; one performance, however, particularly stands out.
Jordan Poyer, Oregon State’s senior cornerback, played the game of his life Saturday, recording three (yes, three!) interceptions on the day.
After each interception Poyer kept yelling to not throw the ball his way; apparently Washington State didn’t get the memo.
Poyer also tallied four solo tackles, one of which for a loss, to go along with the three INTs.
Honorable mention goes out to Scott Crichton, who once again lived in the opposing team’s backfield, and made life a nightmare for WSU.
Crichton recorded four tackles—all for a loss—three of which were sacks. This defensive effort, as well as Poyer’s efforts in the secondary, is why Washington State was only able to muster 20 rushing yards, and just under 230 yards of total offense.
Special Teams Game Ball
It’s been a toss up each week as to who really deserves the special teams game ball, and without any kick/punt return touchdowns, it’s come down to either Keith Kostol or Trevor Romaine.
Doesn’t leave much room for surprise, huh?
Well, this week I’m giving the game ball to Trevor Romaine, even though he did obtain a minor blemish in Saturday’s contest.
Before the blemish, however, Romaine connected on both of his field goal attempts (30 and 24 yards) and helped put the Beavers up for good.
After knocking through the extra point try on the scoring drive in the third quarter, Romaine trotted back out to the field to attempt another extra point try after the Beavers’ fourth quarter touchdown. Apparently extra points aren’t quite as easy as they look and Romaine hooked it.
Luckily, that failed extra point didn’t come back to haunt the Beavers, but it did incite a collective gasp from the home fans. It didn’t help matters that the ensuing kick off went sailing out of bounds, giving WSU the ball at the 35 yard line instead of the 25.
Gaffes aside, Romaine still provided a solid special teams performance, and helped the Beavers maintain their lead throughout.
The Beavers have yet another game against a Cougars team this coming weekend as they will travel to Provo, Utah to take on Brigham Young University.
Total Yards – 370
Passing – 25-42 – 270 yards – 6.4 YPA
Rushing – 40 carries – 100 yards – 2.5 YPC
1st Downs – 21
Penalties – 11-110 yards
TOP – 39:15
Sean Mannion: 25-42, 270 yards, 1 TD, 3 INTs
Storm Woods: 15 rushes, 54 yards, 3.6 avg.
Tyler Anderson: 2 rushes, 26 yards, 1 TD, 13.0 avg.
Markus Wheaton: 9 receptions, 95 yards, 1 TD, 10.6 avg., 2 rushes, 9 yards
Brandin Cooks: 5 receptions, 82 yards, 16.4 avg.