Oregon State (0-3) at Arizona State (3-1)
Another week, another loss for Oregon State. The beavers fell 27-19 at home to UCLA. Though they did rally from a 21-3 deficit to make the game close, a loss is a loss.
Unfortunately for 0-3 OSU, the road doesn’t get any easier with a trip to Arizona State this week.
Coach Mike Riley laid it out for his Oregon State team this week: “This is going to be a hard one. This Arizona State team is a good one and they are old with [14"] starters back.” Thanks for the vote of confidence, coach.
The Beavers are 4-18 all time in Tempe. On the bright side, they won the last three meetings with ASU. On the downside, the key contributors to the most recent victory, Jacquizz Rodgers and Ryan Katz, won’t participate on Saturday.
Rodgers will back up tailback Michael Turner as an Atlanta Falcon; Katz will back up Sean Mannion again, as he’s lost his starting quarterback job with Oregon State.
Can the Beavers score enough to keep pace with Arizona State this week? Mannion at least showed signs of being more than a caretaker last week, throwing the ball 40 times and completing 24 passes for 287 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
Starting running back Malcolm Agnew also returns from injury this week.
But the Beavers haven’t fared particularly well on defense so far this season. Though they’ve fared better against the pass and Arizona State is more of a passing team, OSU hasn’t matched up against an elite aerial attack yet this season.
Brock Osweiler will test the Beavers’ pass rush and secondary. Through four games, he has 1,094 passing yards, eight touchdown passes and three interceptions. Five different Sun Devil receivers have caught 10 or more passes already.
Beavers fans must try to stay optimistic but this week will be tough. The Sun Devils are fresh off a statement win over USC that vaulted them into the national top 25 and should be fired up at home.
Meanwhile, nothing has gone right for the Beavers and their own head coach doesn’t seem convinced that things will improve this week.
Sadly, it appears Oregon State is in for another long, painful Saturday.