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Beavs back in Omaha looking to finish what they started

By Andy / PNW Sports Fans

It seems like yesterday that the Beavers historic 2017 season came to an end in Omaha. But it didn’t conclude with the dogpile that had been seemingly written into the script months prior. A team that came to Omaha with just 4 losses on the season, was instead sent home from the doorstep of the championship series. How could this be? What happened? Greg Street couldn’t see an elephant if its trunk was touching his nose! The Beavs were a team of destiny! These thoughts among others raced through my head as my friends and I finished our beers in disgust at Prineville’s, Ochoco Brewing (Shoutout to them. Good food, good beer and they put the game on for us after a dusty day of softball.) We were supposed to embark on a cross country road trip the following morning to take in the championship series. But like the Beavers, the season didn’t end with us being where we’d hoped.

No matter how hard we tried to pinch ourselves, it was over. The best Oregon State baseball team to ever grace a diamond was coming back to Corvallis empty handed. It was a sobering couple of weeks. An all time great team wouldn’t be rewarded with the immortality it deserved. Instead it would be remembered as a great season that ultimately ended with thoughts of what could have been.

Fast forward a year to present day. Here we are. The Beavers are back in Omaha with a chance to start over and be remembered in a positive way (Hopefully John Canzano and the Oregonian see the irony). It won’t be easy. This field is stacked with blue bloods, immense talent, and teams that are incredibly tough outs. Oh, and the Washington Huskies will also be there.

A lot of familiar faces remain from last year’s squad. Nick Madrigal and Steven Kwan are back. Cadyn Grenier, Trevor Larnach, Adley Rutschman, and Bryce Fehmel are there too. Battle tested seniors Jack Anderson, Kyle Nobach and Luke Heimlich (who decided not to pitch last year because our society doesn’t truly believe in two sides to a story, rehabilitation, or second chances) will all be there. And of course, Pat Casey will be there donning the number 5 from a sun soaked dugout of TD Ameritrade Park.

Yes, much will be the same. But one key difference will be the repetitive muttering of a single word by both players and fans. “FINISH”! It’s a word Nick Madrigal and other leaders of the team have repeatedly used to describe the sole focus of this season. It’s the reason a customary dogpile was absent from an Omaha clinching celebration. And it is that word that will ultimately define the 2018 Beavers. It’s time to finish.

See you in Omaha!

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3 Quick Hits: Omaha Baby

Featured3 Quick Hits: Omaha Baby

By Con

Monday edition of 3 quick hits on this glorious day in June.

Here we go.

1. Omaha

2. Omaha

3. Omaha

Need we say more??? We will…

1B. Omaha

What will it take this year? Pat has the boys throwing gas and playin’ fast. A great quote from him post-game Minnesota: “Omaha is no different in the actual game of baseball. I tell the guys, you have to pick it up and throw it when the ball comes to you and hit it when it’s thrown to you. Pretty simple. The game doesn’t change.”

Can we get an “amen” for Pat??? But seriously he has the Beavs firing on all cylinders right now. Bullpen is coming in to it’s own and the key in Omaha will be the same thing the Beavs did in this series: Grinding out at bats and wearing the opposing pitchers down.

I don’t have a stat for this but it seemed like every at bat OSU had against any Minnesota pitcher was going deep into counts and pitch counts. It was KEY in getting that freshmen gum smacker out of there as he looked all world the first time he faced OSU’s lineup. The Minnesota coach said it best: “It is hard and almost impossible to pitch well to that lineup for 9 innings. We didn’t do that.”

Lindsay Meggs and UNC watch out for the revenge tour. Contact LSU for details…

2B. Football Recruiting Weekend

HUGE weekend for Jonathan Smith and crew. 4 commitments Sunday night. Game changing 4 star DE/LB hybrid who will be locked in with a brother on the team already. The LB’s look rangy and sideline to sideline players. Hopefully, the 6’4″ receiver does better than our last one wearing #13… Momentum is building… Also Dr. Evil decommitting from the team down south… LOL!

3B. NBA Finals Comment

Houston with Chris Paul beats Warriors.

Dubs are still the champs though. No one likes Draymond still… LBJ about to pull a KD who pulled and LBJ originally.

Yawn.

Paging Neil Olshey: Do something.

Go Beavs.

Omaha, Omaha, Omaha.

Featured

Corvallis Regional Preview

By Andy /  PNW Sports Fans

Another regular season is in the books and it’s time to look ahead to playoff baseball in Corvallis. With a 44-10 (22-9 PAC 12) record, Oregon State earned the #3 overall national seed in the NCAA tournament, which means as long as they keep winning, they’ll keep playing at Goss, right up until the College World Series.

Aside from Oregon State, the Corvallis Regional will play host to LSU (who knocked the Beavs out in Omaha last year) San Diego State, and Northwestern State (Louisiana).

So with that information established, let’s breakdown the threat level each team poses in the regional:

*Threat level is determined on a 1-5 scale, with 1 being lowest threat, and 5 being the greatest possible threat.

Northwestern State Demons

Conference- Southland

Record- 37-22 (18-12)

Key Wins- Nebraska, Louisiana Tech, Southland Conference Tournament.

Threat Level- 2

Thoughts- While  the Demons are riding a  five game winning streak and coming off of a conference tournament title run, It’s important to remember that the level of competition in the Southland conference is not equivalent to what the Beavers faced all year in the Pac 12. While it’s true that any team in the tournament is capable of making a run, it would be a major letdown if the Beavs couldn’t get the regional started off with a win on Friday night. Northwestern State will play hard, but ultimately, there is too much talent in the Corvallis regional for the cinderella candidates to keep dancing.

San Diego State Aztecs

Conference- Mountain West

Record- 39-19 (18-12)

Key Wins-  Washington, Cal State Fullerton (twice), Mountain West Tournament.

Threat Level- 3

Thoughts- The Aztecs have proven they can play with anybody. They are coming off of their fifth conference title in six years and are not afraid of quality opponents. As a level 3 threat, I consider San Diego State a formidable foe. The only reason I don’t give them a 4 is because I really believe in this Oregon State squad. That, and the fact that the regional is within the friendly confines of Goss.

LSU Tigers

Conference- SEC

Record- 37-25 (15-15)

Key Wins- South Carolina, Arkansas (three times), Florida.

Threat Level- Midnight (that’s a joke for those that watch The Office) I’ll give them a 4.

Thoughts- Ah yes, LSU. I’m pretty sure everyone in Beaver Nation was “chomping” (funny, this is actually a commonly misused phrase. The original phrase is actually champing at the bit. You’re welcome.) at the bit. Anyway, everyone knows the history as LSU knocked an OSU team destined for a national title out of Omaha last season. Most fans are rightfully bitter about how that all went down. There was a foul ball debacle and a Greg Street malfunction, but when the dust settled, Oregon State didn’t emerge as champions. Having an opportunity to exact revenge is all this team could ask for. It won’t be easy as LSU has been playing good ball lately and has been tested in the rigorous SEC. Don’t be fooled by a 37-25 record. This team is elite when it wants to be. The one thing that gives me pause with LSU is their 4-14 road record. It’s easy to pile up wins with 10,000 Tigers fans backing you at Alex Box stadium, but this ball club hasn’t faired quite as well on the road against fellow elite competition.

This is going to be a wild regional. Truth be told, I think this group is pretty tough when looking at the pedigree of teams making the trek to Corvallis. The good news is if Oregon State survives the test, it will mean they are playing championship level baseball.

*Note for readers- OG PNW contributor, co founder, and friend to all, Braught will be at the games. Look for the handsome, slender man in the outfield finding creative ways to steal views. If he’s a little hesitant or shy at first, offer him a “coldie” (found out during the Stanford series that this is the term Pat Casey prefers). You’ll be glad you did.

Go Beavs!

3 Quick Hits; Weekend Warriors

Featured3 Quick Hits; Weekend Warriors

By Con / PNW Sports Fans

Here on another addition of 3 quick hits to start off your week. Our random thoughts and observations from any weekend activities.

1. OSU Baseball just misses sweep: While one of the PNW crew members is busy in the Basque country, an unlikely member was glued to the Oregon State baseball series vs Stanford this weekend. It was a pleasurable site watching OSU pound the Cardinal into submission game one and game two and to start game three. Then it all fell apart when frosh Kevin Abel walked 30 straight batters… Ok maybe not that many but you get the point. However, this does not put a damper on taking the series from your only competition in the Pac-12. OSU bats are FIRE right now. They will continue to be the rest of the season. The lineup is too good for any pitcher to get past. But the elusive Sunday starter still remains a mystery. We had faith in Abel as he had a few brilliant performances recently and with Grant Grambrell not being able to pitch effectively in t-ball right now,  Abel is one of our only options. We will see what Pat does. I prefer to try Brandon Eisert out as Sunday starter. He is more experienced then Abel and has proven the ability to keep his pitch count down and be semi consistent. We will see how this develops. Quote of the weekend from Steven Kwan regarding Pat Casey as a coach: “He’s the biggest motivator ever, the best coach I’ve ever had, but really hard to play for at first. He had the look that would bring you to your knees. That played into my self-doubts, made you think you’re the worst baseball player ever.”

GOD BLESS YOU PAT. NEVER CHANGE.

2. HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY??? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY?HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY? HOW DID BRAD STEVENS NOT WIN COY?

PROOF THE NBA IS RIGGED. RIP DWANE CASEY THOUGH. Best record in FRANCHISE HISTORY and gets fired? LOL. Terry Stotts should retire then…

3. It’s a slow sports season…Braught what is happening with the Mariners? Oh yeah they suck again and over-committed to all fans and got everyone hyped about how good they were going to be and half their team is injured I guess. Oh and the Ichiro experiment? He is quickly to the front office…as what? Hopefully head translator so he can speak to the clone of himself he will bless the Mariners franchise with. Seriously, I am calling for a complete overhaul and dismantling of this franchise. A la the Florida Marlins except not with the slime ball Derek Jeter and with actual intelligence in trades and signings, not another MLB team working hard to make the Yankees better…

 

PS: Great job Wayne Tinkle for getting a midget point guard who can’t really shoot. So he will be slashing to the rim I guess at 5’5″??? Awesome strategy. But hey Nate Robinson is/was the ultimate OSU basketball killer…

 

2018 Spring “Game” Recap and Summer Preview

Featured2018 Spring “Game” Recap and Summer Preview

By Con

Well as other have reported this last week, the Oregon State spring “game” was not exactly that. It was a practice. A complete joke to be called a game. Now, through this the whole PNW crew and other contributors were in attendance and have some thoughts. However, we were all very disappointed as the advertisement by OSU was billed as a typical spring game and it was so far from that we are afraid it pushed some fans away.

One of the most boring experiences for the normal fan watching. And there were a few of them that left after 30 minutes of OSU doing strictly drills. Then 10 plays, then more drills.

We here love Jonathan Smith. Niner. The Return. Whatever you want to call the glorious 5’9″ walk-on from Glendale, CA. This spring game however was similar to the 2000 start OSU had with a 21-19 victory over lowly Eastern Washington which was no where near the caliber of team that they are now…but in JS defense, OSU isn’t that caliber of 2000 either…

Also, this is a DIRECT SHOT to the Oregon State marketing department: THANK YOU for finally taking the Victory through Valley 2016 banner down from the Valley Football Center. That is one thing you have excelled at in the past five years. That is the EXACT problem with you though. That is the ONLY thing you have excelled at in the past five years. The atmosphere at this spring game was TERRIBLE! Nothing to get anyone excited, no replays, no previews of upcoming season, NOTHING! There was one single drawing to win a season ticket for the year but at a pop up table from Walmart with a makeshift cardboard box… Seriously? I mean Benny wasn’t even in the dang place! A joke!

What else is the marketing department for athletics doing right now??? Men’s BB is on the brink of destruction and not in season, Pat is doing his thing and carrying OSU baseball to another juggernaut season and our most important team, WBB and Scott Rueck are busy getting a top-10 recruiting class and looking for ANOTHER Final Four appearance in 2018-2019… So AGAIN WTF IS THE OSU MARKETING DEPARTMENT DOING????????????????????????

Give me a towel. Give me a poster. Give a clear bag. I don’t care. Do something to engage this fan base that Gary Andersen is still destroying. Niner can do a lot of things but he cannot be the marketing department as well. It is sickening to look at how physically dirty the stadium is as well. Ever heard of power washing??? Pay me minimum wage and I am there to do it for you! Get some pride! But then again, no one in your department went to Oregon State so why would they have pride in the school????

RANT OVER ON THIS TOPIC FOR NOW!

Quick thoughts on the Spring “Game”:

-Conor Blount had a great day. As we reported at Dam City showcase, Colletto, Luton and Blount get the snaps. Blount did NOT have a good day at Dam City but rebounded and was by far the best QB. I think the thing that stood out was his timing. Most of the routes he completed were timing throws and fades where he hit a receiver in stride. Nice to see. Nothing is settled however, this will go into fall camp with Luton and Blount battling.

-Kee Whetzel all over the field as usual. Will be a STUD this Fall.

-Doug T looks promising as a rotation linebacker. As well as Shemar Smith.

-OSU is in trouble at the center position. One, Sumner Houston is still undersized and gets bullied. Two, it seems like no center on our roster can snap the ball consistently. Think UO in the Alamo Bowl… NEVER FORGET! But seriously it is troubling. There were about 5-6 just fumbles on snaps. Then about 50% of the snaps in general were low or at QB’s knees which throws off the time of everything. Ironic because the quitter, GA was a college center…

-No special teams full go work which was disappointing.

-Champ Flemmings still rocking it. He will be a huge part of the offense this fall.

-AP, Calvin Tyler and BJ Baylor look like a great mix up of RB’s. All solid players. Throw in Christian Wallace and OSU looks to be in good shape at RB. Crazy to think 3 players left from last year and they will still be in good shape with arguably more young talent incoming and starter not being “injured” every play where his ankle gets touched by a blade of turf.

-WR stepping up. Timmy Hernandez is going to have a Brandon Powers/Shane Morales type season. Look for Kolby Taylor to make some catches this year. Sturdy, good hands and can take a hit.

-TE pretty much non existent.

-DL looked ok. Hard to tell with lack of QB hitting, physicality at some points.

-A player who stood out in a huge way on the DL was former walk-on Jaelen Bush. #40. The dude is every part of 6’7″ and not a twig. Merle hear at PNW always sulks at the loss of former 6’7″ DE, Joah Robinett, but Bush looks like a similar player but plays with more leverage and is MUCH stronger. He ripped through countless O lineman to break up plays. His length is impressive and again seeing him up close, he has the strength and weight to compete this year. 3rd down pass rushing specialist in 2018 MINIMUM. Only a frosh.

Questions for Summer:

  1. Who really will put in work at QB? It feels like the QB competition will be settled between Luton and Blount. Both can sling it, some people claim Blount is “much more mobile” then Luton. People compare Luton’s mobility to Sean Mannion. That is a joke if I’ve ever heard one. The dude has enough mobility to escape the pocket and not be a statue. I would say Conor Blount is more athletic and faster when he escapes but overall same capability. I doubt OSU will be running much read option keepers with either. They cannot afford to have QB injury debacles a la the last 5 years. We think this battle will come down to intangibles like leadership and timing/chemistry with WR. Both are fine options for OSU.
  2. Will Bright ever be back on this team? So much for senior leadership. No one has reported on this for a while. Bright with proper coaching could be a force on the outside for OSU. Will be worth watching.
  3. Who will emerge as true frosh or RS frosh? Look for Jaelen Bush, Isiah Smalls, Champ Flemmings, Kolby Taylor, Jeffery Manning to name a few. It will be interesting what players that come in during the fall can make an immediate impact.
  4. Will coaches find QB for future? They need one. Simple as that. JS has many connections along with Riley. We assume the priority in this summer recruiting wise will be locking up a QB they can groom and develop.
  5. Does team speed and strength improve? People reporting that OSU defense is suddenly “playing faster” and “so much quicker” are FAKE NEWS. There is very little evidence of that. We saw players in the spring “game” look slow to be honest. This was a huge issue in the Andersen era. Brandon Arnold getting beat by a PSU WR who played QB in the same game was a sign… Will be interesting to see the speed of this team come fall and game situations. This has been glaring for a few years.

PLEASE OSU MARKETING COME UP WITH THINGS TO GET FANS ENGAGED. ITS NOT HARD.

PLEASE. PLEASE. PLEASE. YOU WILL LOSE THE FANBASE BEFORE JS EVEN GETS STARTED.

Go Beavs.

Featured

Seahawks draft recap: No grades, just thoughts

The draft has come and gone and this is when all of the “experts” start handing out grades based on the picks all 32 teams made. That is probably one of the dumbest exercises I’ve ever heard of. It’s honesty just filler, because grading a team’s draft selections before they even set foot on a football field is a joke. Like I’m supposed to just accept the fact that one of the “draft analysts” at the big networks have a better idea of what a team should’ve done than the GM? It is such an idiotic practice to grade a draft as soon as the final pick is in. I’ll end the rant there, but as you can tell, the whole thing fires me up. As was evidenced by the Seahawks picks, teams draft to need and fit, not to what some stat nerd at ESPN had on their mock board.

So instead of draft grades, I’m just going to give you a brief summary on each player the Seahawks selected and what they bring to the table. If your looking for grades, maybe I’ll hand those out in 2020, when I actually have an idea of what this class is.

Rashaad Penny -RB San Diego State -Round 1 Pick 27

The Seahawks wasted no time making a statement in the 2018 draft. With the selection of Rashaad Penny in the first round, Pete Carroll and John Schneider told the wold that they   want to get back to their principles. This program was built on a run game and defense. Having Russell Wilson is what sets them over the top, but it makes his life much easier when they can run the ball.

Penny brings toughness and stability to a position group that desperately needs it. Some say drafting Penny in the first round is a stretch, but Pete and John got what they wanted. Throw on the tape and you’ll realize why they were so excited to land this guy. Penny never misses games, is a blend of power and speed, can catch the football, is a threat to score on every play, and is deadly in the return game.

I can’t wait to see this guy get on the field. He’ll have to earn his carries, but the potential is great. Penny, Carson, Davis, Prosise, and Mckissic? Yes please! Whoever emerges from that group will have earned their way onto the field and I expect to see a much improved ground attack in 2018.

Rasheem Greene – DE USC- Round 3 pick 15

This guy is an absolute beast. He wreaked havoc on every offensive line he faced. His athleticism makes him extremely versatile. I stated last week (right along with running back) that the defensive line needed some depth. Pete and John showed once again what they are committed to with this selection. I think this kid has a chance to make an impact immediately.

Will Dissly- TE Washington- Round 4 Pick 20

Sensing a theme here? Me too. Physical, punishing football. The Seahawks aren’t bringing Dissly in to be the next Jimmy Graham, This dude is a converted defensive lineman who wore number 98 throughout the entirety of his college career. Will is going to mix it up in the run game and be a nice frame for Wilson to throw too, Again, he’ll have to earn his way with veterans  Ed Dixon and Nick Vannett already on the roster. However, don’t be surprised to see all three on the field at once this season.

Shaquem Griffin- OLB Central Florida- Round 5- Pick 4

This was seemingly everyone’s favorite pick and for good reason. Chances are even the casual fan has heard of Shaquem Griffin. He was an All-American linebacker last season while helping UCF to an undefeated season.

But what most people know Griffin for is the fact that he accomplished those impressive feats with one hand. Shaquem had a nerve disorder as a child that caused him so much pain, doctors amputated his left hand when he was young. He overcame that setback and has become one of the best stories in sports.

A lot of teams overlooked Shaquem because of his missing appendage, which is great news for the Seahawks. Griffin is an absolute steal and is probably the hungriest player in this class. He is ready to show the world what he can do at the highest level. Griffin’s biggest asset is probably his quickness. He can move better than just about any linebacker you’ll find. I can’t wait to see this guy in action.

Oh yeah… his twin brother is cornerback, Shaquille Griffin. How cool is that? I can’t wait to see what these two accomplish together.

Tre Flowers- S Oklahoma State- Round 5- Pick 9

Tre flowers was a nice pickup for the Seahawks in the 5th round. He is very solid in coverage which is why some people think the Seahawks will ultimately move him to corner. Either way, this kid has a good frame, can run and plays each snap like he’s on a mission.

Michael Dickson- P Texas- Round 5- Pick 12

That’s not a typo. The Seahawks did in fact draft a punter in the first round. I know, I about spit my beer out at Flattail Brewing (Go Beavs!) when I saw the pick come in. But hang with me for a second. This is perhaps the most insane punter I’ve ever seen at the collegiate level. He booms the ball and can seriously manipulate spin and bounce better than anyone i’ve ever seen. If you’re still furious, I totally understand. It’s a punter, it just feels wrong. All you need to know about Dickson is that he won the Ray Guy Award, declared early ( yes a punter that came out early) and was named MVP in the Longhorn’s Bowl victory. Take a deep breath.

Jamarco Jones- OT Ohio State- Round 5- Pick 31

I can practically hear the murmurs of “what about the offensive line?” from my couch as I type this. Don’t forget that the Seahawks traded their second round pick to the Texans in exchange for Duane Brown. Brown will probably sign an extension at some point this year, so think of him as the Seahawks drafting a pro bowl caliber left tackle in the second round. Justin Britt is steadily entrenched at center, Ethan Pocic and DJ Fluker will fill in the guard spots, and the team will get George Fant back who will probably take over at right tackle. So that just leaves Seattle with the task of filling in with depth. Jamarco Jones will provide that and could be a solid player down the road.

Jake Martin- OLB Temple- Round 6- Pick 12

Martin comes to the Seahawks as a bit of a project. Honestly I haven’t heard much about him or watched film extensively. However I know the Seahawks wouldn’t have selected him unless they thought he could come in and compete. Who knows? Maybe this is the next unknown commodity to become a star on this defense. We’ll see.

Alex McGough- QB Florida International – Round 7- Pick 2

Other then being a fun name to say, Alex McGough brings some good attributes to the table. A fiery competitor is the first thing that jumps out to me when watching this QB play. He plays each down like it’s his last. Sometimes you have to keep your emotions in check as a QB, so while I think his attitude is a positive trait it’s also something to watch.

McGough is also pretty athletic and shows the ability to throw on the run and also pick up yards on the ground. The Seahawks like having a QB that’s a threat with both his arm and legs. Though far from polished, I think McGough will be a good camp arm to have and could push Austin Davis for the back up spot come August.

Pete and John got their guys:

It’s obvious to me that the Seahawks were looking to regain their identity in this draft. Who knows how all of these guys will pan out. But one thing is certain; this is going to be a hard nosed physical football team, once again built on defense and running the ball.

I’m looking forward to things getting back to normal.

Go Hawks!

3 Quick Hits: Portland Trail Blazers Summer

Featured3 Quick Hits: Portland Trail Blazers Summer

By Con

This is a new series we will be starting where every Monday we will post 3 quick hits about a topic of the PNW teams we cover.

It could range from today the Blazers to the Hillsboro Hops. To 3 “sports” talk radio hosts that suck. Who knows. All we know is Chad Doing is the best post-game sports radio host every to grace planet earth.

Today it’s the team that ripped our hearts out. Got us pumped. Then went on vacation. Don’t know if we can even call it a “no-show” that sounds generous. What the heck happened to the Portland Trail Blazers??? Well a lot of people have written about it. But we are here to hit the “burning” topic of summer with this team…

  1. Draft Night and Neil. What in the heck will Portland do come draft night? Will Neil Olshey be off picking daisies like Meyers Leonard? Or fir trees like Lillard for our foundation? Or will Neil be picking nothing but his buyout of his contract? The Blazers have the 24th pick this summer, 24th picks of past years for teams include:

-Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (yeah exactly)

-Tyus Jones

-Shabazz Napier

-Tim Hardaway Jr.

-Reggie Jackson

-Serge Ibaka

-Rudy Fernandez

-Brian Cook

So as you can see let’s just call it unknown. Now Neil has discussed a lot of “options” for this team that include draft picks and trades…NOT FREE AGENCY.

But how can you talk about free agency when you have the most incredible track record in free agency with Meyers Leonard and Evan Turner being corner stone signings? Yeah… 😦

2. Free Agents: Who Stays? Nurkic, Ed Davis, Planet Pat and Shabazz will be up in free agency. Restricted or not, there is no way we can see Portland keeping Shabazz. He played himself into a bigger contract in the middle of last season and what can he do that Wade Baldwin can’t provide? I know Baldwin can provide defense needed on guards in the West. Shabazz just isn’t worth it.

Nurkic should resign for around Meyers Leonard money. Yeah that just got typed. That would be a solid deal for Portland as they would keep a developing big man who shows decent promise and remember folks, has had only ONE minor knee surgery and is still 23… There just aren’t other options out there unless a trade comes up.

Ed Davis endeared himself to us. God bless him. We need more of him. Please Ed when you read this because this article will be everywhere in about 890 years, please remember that you resigned with us until you retire. Ed is 28 this year.

Planet Pat should be a keeper if Olshey is. He has history of falling in love with his draft picks but Pat is a solid bench player who has only gotten better and could be a great piece moving forward.

3. Zach Collins Development. Will Zach take the next step? He is already well ahead of schedule and can’t even drink yet. Some people have thrown out that he could be our starting 4. Making Aminu or Harkless expendable in a trade deal. News flash we are NEVER going to get a trade offer for Turner that isn’t breaking up CJ and Dame. Alas, back to Zach. He showed great hunger, hustle and offensive skill that was a huge surprise to most. He had the defensive end length and will just need to add strength. But the key for him this summer will be his post up game and body. If the post up game improves with the same trajectory his shooting has, Rip City, we are in for a treat for years to come…

RIP CITY. GOD BLESS CHAD DOING.

OSU Football Spring Game Preview: 8 Things We Will Be Watching

FeaturedOSU Football Spring Game Preview: 8 Things We Will Be Watching

By Con

Like the title says, we will be watching these 8 things closely at the Oregon State Spring Game that kicks off at 1:00 pm at Reser, Saturday April 28th. And unlike the throw away newspaper written by *Morons* up north, we will actually be watching more things that have to do with football and not attendance. Seriously???

Back to sensible talk… These are in no way in order of importance.

  1. Key plays/wrinkles/style of Jonathan Smith’s offense.  This will be huge to see what the pace, style, blocking schemes, pass/run ratio, small wrinkles are going forward with the new “up-tempo pro-style” attack that Smith plans on running. Obviously a spring game isn’t going to show all of their stuff but we think Smith genuinely will be testing out players that he thinks can make an impact early as well as packages. He has noted this multiple times during press conferences and post practice interviews as really trying to find the identity of the team and who the play-makers are and how to adapt his offense around the personnel he has.
  2. Special Teams. Something the previous coach of OSU was supposed to be known for and emphasize was special teams. This proved to be as blatant of a lie as the Victory Through Valley Fall 2016 banner still flying in 2018. Does anyone remember us going offsides on multiple kicks and one or two onside kicks that we RECOVERED? Only to be called offsides and negated???? FUN! We are looking for details. Details in blocking, gunners going full speed down the field looking to kill a return man, explosiveness from the returners, and overall who might be a few studs to make an impact on special teams early in their careers or just this year. Think Gerard Lawson. His CB downs he played for OSU were atrocious. Yet he literally made a living in the NFL for multiple years because he played every special teams coverage and return and went head hunting.
  3. Wide Receivers. All in all the WR position has been filled with “potential” and never lived up to any hype or consistency for OSU in the past years since Brandin Cooks. This unit needs to impact the game. Great WR can help out an inexperienced or mediocre QB. There are good players in this group and young players. Who will step up?
  4. Linebackers. In the past 15 years, OSU has produced some incredible linebackers that run sideline to sideline and can hit to drive ball carriers back. However, it has been a long time since we have seen an LB at OSU chase down a guy on the edge, hit a guy and have him actually go backwards not pull him for 3 more positive yards. Also, this is the new DC’s former position he coached and arguably our most proven coach, Trent Bray’s group. What type of player will we see? Hair on fire or cement shoes?
  5. QB Reps/Strengths and Weaknesses. This is an obvious one and the position is between three players. JC transfer Jack Colletto, Conor Blount and Jake Luton. We will be watching the skills of each as the coaches have said they are all different. We especially will be watching for one thing, team leadership and command of group. Our head coach was a quiet leader on the field but when he talked people listened and he had excellent command of the offense.
  6. Christian Wallace, Jeremy Roichner, DeShon Wilson, Calvin Tyler, Trajon Cotton, Doug T., Isiah Smalls and Alex Blanch. All players in important positions or rolls that have something to prove. Either we have noticed them, they have been talked about, JC transfer, you name it. These players are a little under the radar to some but we will be watching their every move.
  7. Defensive Line. Will OSU get a sack in their first 5 games in 2018? Who knows. This is self explanatory. The D-Line must step up this year and certain players and the depth isn’t there to just shuffle in new bodies.
  8. Which freshmen will make early impact? Both true and redshirts. Thinking about the Kolby Taylor’s, Isiah Smalls, DeShon Wilson’s of the world. We will be watching which ones are going hard but also trying to get on the field ANY possible way. It has been stated that every position is up for grabs, prove it!

Go Beavs.

RIP Victory Through Valley 2016 Banner.

Featured

NFL Draft: Five things for Seahawks fans to watch for

field-sport-ball-america.jpgBy Andy / PNW Sports Fans

The 2018 NFL Draft gets underway this Thursday at 5pm PT at AT&T Stadium in Arlington. There is no shortage of storylines heading into this year’s spectacle. As usual, all eyes are on the young quarterbacks and a few other eye popping playmakers. For Seahawks fans, the draft is intriguing for different reasons. For us, the intrigue comes from wondering what unknown gem Pete Carroll and John Schneider will find. Although the last few years have been a little disappointing, I think we might be staring down the barrel of another legendary draft for Seattle’s dynamic duo.

Here are five things for Seahawks fans to watch for heading into Thursday:

Will the Seahawks actually draft someone at 18?

The Seahawks are slotted to have the 18th overall pick in the first round. For anyone who has followed the team more than a couple of years, it feels like a forgone conclusion that the they might be looking to trade back to secure more picks. According to Brady Henderson of ESPN.com , the last time the Seahawks used their original first round pick was 2011 when they selected James Carpenter. It wouldn’t surprise me one bit to see the Seahawks once again trade back in favor of securing more picks, especially considering the fact that the team doesn’t have a second or a third round pick. That being said, Pete and John are always predictably unpredictable.

Biggest Needs

This one might seem obvious given how horrendous the offensive line has been. While the line needs to be addressed, it’s far from the only position group that would benefit from reinforcements.

The Seahawks could also use some fresh bodies on the other side of the trenches. With the departure of Michael Bennett and the probable medical retirement of Cliff Avril, the Seahawks will be leaning heavily on Frank Clark. If the Seahawks want to get a consistent pass rush, they’ll need to add edge depth that can play meaningful snaps early.

Running back is also a need in this class. Sure, the line was bad, but the running backs weren’t doing a lot to help the big fellas out last year. I like that the team held on to Mike Davis for insurance and Chris Carson showed promise before getting injured. But the team can’t take any chances with a poor rushing attack in 2018.

Other positions of need? Look for additions at receiver, tight end and linebacker. A lot of you are probably screaming at me to include defensive backs on this list, but I actually really like the potential of the youngsters here. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure they’ll bring in some guys to compete, but I think some of the athletes from last year’s class have a chance to join Shaq Griffin in the starting backfield.

Is Earl staying?

Speaking of the secondary. . . The biggest question of the offseason has been whether or not Earl Thomas will be traded. I think the longer it goes, the less likely it is that Earl plays elsewhere in 2018. If that’s the case, I’d be thrilled. Unlike his former Legion of Boom teammates, Earl still seems to be playing at the top of his game. While his window of dominance might be gradually closing he is still a huge asset on the back end of that defense. Especially when you consider there will be several  young players fighting for snaps around him.

A deal could certainly go down on draft day, but with each passing day I feel better about the fact that the man I affectionately refer to as the human missile will be back with the team for another season.

Significance of this draft

Simply put, this draft is of major significance. The Pete and John legacy will either be cemented or softened depending on how the 2017 and 2018 classes pan out. They will either be remembered as orchestrating a great five year run and then fizzling out, or showing that they built a generational culture that continued to win for a decade plus.

We won’t be able to judge that for at least a couple of years, but these last two classes will  write history one way or another.

How to feel after it’s all wrapped up

If you’re anything like me, you’ll probably walk away from this experience feeling somewhat indifferent. Sure, the draft is exciting and all, but it’s impossible to know what you got out of it until the season comes around. Sometimes you don’t know what you have for two or three seasons. No matter how much of an expert people claim to be, it’s impossible to perfectly predict how a class is going to mature. Chances are almost every player the Seahawks select will be a name you’ve never heard in your life. That’s just the way it is. Once the picks are in I’ll watch some film and get excited. But truthfully, the draft leaves me feeling a little empty.

Though the draft isn’t my favorite event on the sports calendar, it’s still of great importance for a franchise looking to get back to its principles. I’m excited for a clean slate in 2018 and a renewed hunger inside the Virgina Mason Athletic Center.

Go Hawks!

Mid Spring Ball Football Review April 14 Practice @ DamCity

FeaturedMid Spring Ball Football Review April 14 Practice @ DamCity

By Con

We were live and tweeting today at the DamCity event at Mountainside high school in Beaverton, Oregon watching OSU mid way through spring. Check our tweets for pretty much a play by play of the whole day. For now, we will just go over a general position group summary and some stand outs. This will not be comprehensive as DB position has so many injuries so you can’t see the actual standouts and other position groups weren’t watched as closely. Here we go:

General Vibe

-Jonathan Smith (JS) is very in control of this team. The delusional fans especially on twitter who think that Mike Riley is running the team, will take it over, is more involved than people think, etc. are just like we said DELUSIONAL. There is some video content that we posted and you can just tell MR is no where near the team other than his position group and honestly is just another one of the guys and coaches. Smith leads everything with no hesitation, and MR is NEVER next to him whispering, coaching, pointing or anything. He is literally with his position group all the time like a normal coach. Please stop spreading this narrative for those who are. It’s embarrassing and very *uckish honestly. Just stop.

Practice was crisp and fast paced. OSU uses MUCH more tackling dummies, pads, etc. than any coach or team I have seen in the past 20 years. There is always a purpose for each session they go through. No one is standing around acting like they don’t know what to do. Warm-ups are different, much more team oriented vs individual groups, same with post practice and special teams work. Also, JD pointed this out, every drill where a QB was throwing to a WR, kicker kicking FG, punting, blocking, etc. basically any drill where it was multiple position groups interacting, there were multiple things happening i.e. three QBs throwing to three different WR at once. Or two kickers kicking. Or 3 guys blocking 3 guys. NEVER just one on one and people watching. I love this because its all about the reps!

Now comes position reviews:

QB- 2 man race between Colletto and Luton. Blount got a few reps but those two got significantly more. We know the coaching staff has been mixing it up but it just seems that these two are at the top. They are also playing the most consistent.

Some outlets report how “good” Luton looks in the new offense. This is so OVERSTATED. Every QB is treading water with the new schemes and what not. Luton looks fine as far as injury is concerned. He does have good zip on ball. Still varying accuracy.

Colletto is spitting image of JS in college. A little taller but not by much. Has same “heave” delivery that JS had. More mobile, also wears number 9 ironically. Stocky though. Luton seems to be a bit ahead because he knows when to run and when to get out of the pocket. Colletto is still learning this as he got jumbled up a few times as the pocket collapsed.

Really, JS will build the offense around what he has. He has stated this so many times. If its Luton, he will try to spread the ball around and motion action. Colletto seems more of a solid runner, not fast but solid so you would see more true read option. Again, WAY too early to tell right now how good either will be but seems like its between them two.

RB: Artavis Pierce will be a stud this year. He looks bigger, faster and smarter. He just does everything right and is everything you want in a back that plays every down. He is the clear number one. No one else close. Likewise, Calvin Tyler, #23, is the clear number two and capable. He had some good goal line work and is pretty small so he does a good job of hiding behind the line and then exploding through like Bernard mastered. Can also catch out of the backfield. Him and AP are a great first back and capable back up.

Christian Wallace is a wild card here. He had a few carries, also a fumble. He looks fluid and like he is having fun at the position. He just looks happy which makes us happy. He will make a big impact on special teams if he embraces it and could be a big factor in return game. But barring injuries, doubt he plays much this year. He needs to work on pass blocking and just being solid at running, catching and blocking consistently. But so much potential. 2019 look for him to have a special package, all special teams work, maybe a wildcat. Who knows, that could be 2018 if he learns the plays and dedicates himself.

WR: One name to know and remember now: Champ Flemmings. He will be huge this year. Similar role to the legend James Rodgers his true frosh year. Flemmings looks solid in his body compared to last year he looked like he was 10. But it is clear that JS is looking for him to be involved in the offense in quick passes, screens, fly sweep pitches, etc. Anything to get him the ball in space. The dude is quick and just like Rodgers, hardly even gets hit because no one can touch him. Also has great hands and was returning punts. Although he dropped a few.

Timmy Hernandez will be a solid senior like Brandon Powers was. Isaiah Hodgins looks on a different level than all the WR. Both physically and mentally. He is BIG and looks much more comfortable in his second year with a coach that knows if he will be playing in games or not. He went down with a shoulder injury late in practice, stayed on field with no pads on and sling and ice. Seemed in good spirits. Great route runner as well and creates separation. But again, star of the day and future will be Flemmings. Kolby Taylor also looked solid over the middle on slants and after the catch. Very sturdy player.

It is great to see the knowledge of the coaching staff embracing quick passes, screens and slants that should be the bread and butter of an offense with quick guys and a mediocre QB at best. No diss on players but I love the way you can see the coaches building around their stronger players and just not even messing with their weaker positions.

TE: Like we just said above, doesn’t seem to be a strong position right now with Togai and Tuli out. We saw a grand total of ZERO passes thrown the TE way. Doesn’t mean they didn’t have their good plays through. Isaiah Smalls, true frosh, will absolutely play in 2018. He is smart and is picking up plays well. For example, the blocking schemes you can tell he is in the right place at the right time especially on WHAM blocks and outside pulling. This is encouraging. Also, number 45, our boy Ralph T, was first man up with the injuries. He looked solid blocking.

OL: First team = Yanni, Moore, Houston, Lavaka, Brandel. Don’t see that changing much unless someone else emerges as center. Lavaka, Brandel and Moore seem locked in. Yanni solid at OG. Houston is so suspect at center. He just isn’t that big and gets beat more than any other OL. Onesimus Clark looks the part but didn’t see much from him. Kammy Delp still not even in the conversation. All GA JC transfers are garbage. Will be a group to watch going forward if a younger guy emerges.

DL: First team = JC transfer Jermey R, Aydon, Kalani. Seems solid group. Jeremey R, has some nasty in him. A few scuffles and push after whistle. Love that. Didn’t watch this group much. Aydon up a lot in weight. Don’t know if thats a good thing. Seems like the DC scheme is for all 3 DL to take up blockers like a real 3-4 is run. Not Clunes version.

LB: First team = Kee, Doug T, Shemar Smith and Willis. I expect Bright if he comes back to be in this and Andrzej Hughes-Murray. Love Shemar Smith though. He is has gotten significantly bigger and all healed up from injury. Will be a rotation player. Kee Whetzel is LOCKED in to start. Dude brings the juice and energy and is fast enough to cover RB or a slot WR. Doug T looks like he could hold down the middle. Big dude. Think Alan Darlin.

DB: Hard to tell with so many injuries. Jalen Moore beefed up and flying all over. DeShon Wilson will probably burn his redshirt. Hits HARD and had a few at the scrimmage. Has speed as well. Has body to play right away on special teams. With Crawford, Irvine and Dwayne Williams all out, we could see Wilson as a nickel player and sub. Isiah Dunn has beefed up as well. Kaleb Hayes is a long rangy corner who made some plays as well. I am not worried about this unit at all. Morris will be back at the other safety and Trajon Cotton, Jeffery Manning will contribute. We have great long rangy cover athletes here. The most athletic I have seen a secondary.

Overall, didn’t watch D very closely. Was focusing on offense because of how bad they have been. Its hard to play defense even if you are Alabama when you have the most 3 and outs in the nation and score 10 points per game in the Pac-12. Defense seems they will be serviceable.

Special Teams: GET RID OF AUSSIE STYLE PUNTING NOW. NO ONE DOES THIS IN THE NFL. THAT SHOULD BE A SIGN. You are guaranteed a shank punt which can swing game honestly. This happened in the scrimmage a 15 yarder straight out of bounds. However, Alex Bland number 38 from Australia looks solid. Step up from the enigma of Probeski last year. Onto kicker. Jordan Choukair has a HUGE leg. He looks much more comfortable and involved then last year. Seemed like GA even though he would say opposite, didn’t give to craps about special teams. They can be a huge part of the game good or bad. You will notice. Group seems to be solid right now. Will be better in both Punter and Kicker then 2017.

The ONLY returners fielding punts today were Champ Flemmings and our boy Tino Allen. Both were a mixed bag. Still learning how to be consistent. Trevon Bradford was out today but was the only player close to the returners. Again its all about reps. I love that we have set three punt returners and that is all who take the reps. Not having 7 guys back there watching gives the 3 top guys double reps and experience and also has less guys watching at practice which is a theme in the JS era so far. No kickoffs were practiced besides a few kicks from the kickers with no coverage or returns.

Standouts: As discussed above, a few standouts from this practice;

-Champ Flemmings, WR. Great athlete. JS building some plays around him.

-DeShon Wilson, DB. Hard hitter and quick to ball. All over the field.

-Artavis Pierce, RB. Will be our workhorse RB.

-Isiah Smalls, TE. Actually looked the part for a just turned 18 year old. Smart player. Can split him out as well.

-Doug T, LB. Solid inside linebacker. Just big and strong. Could shore up the middle of the D that has been lacking for a while. All his hits and tackles pushed the ball carrier back, not him back.

-Jordan Choukair, K. Looks much improved and has big leg. Could be weapon this year. Also booted kickoffs with no coverage far. All his FG kicks continuously go “UP” vs straight on or line drive. A lot of lift to his kicks.

-Jonathan Smith, HC. The guy is just an encourager, high energy but not annoying and a leader. He is VERY involved on offense in almost every play. Trusts his coaches and the players listen when he talks.

See you at the spring game in two weeks.

PNW Crew

Hope

FeaturedHope

Hope.

It’s a wonderful thing and it’s all I have had since the beginning of the Tinkle era. But when their is hope in sports, their are questions. And I have had, and continue to have, numerous questions since Tinkle has taken over the basketball program.

Year one of Tinkle was a thrill. He (and GP2) somehow willed a team that had no business playing in the Pac-12 to a winning record. The team bought into Tinkle’s defense and executed a very smart coaching strategy (slow the game and limit offensive possessions). That team had to play Olaf and Jarmal 20 – 30 minutes a night. And every question can be answered by that.

Year 2. Our best ever recruiting class, a senior GP2, and Jarmal relinquished to only playing 14 minutes a game, led us to a NCAA tournament. Many of the following questions can be answered by playing freshmen and that Olaf/Jarmal were still active contributors.

Year 3. Everyone blames injuries for the 5-win season. Valid, but if you can get ’14-’15 team to win games, you can get this team to win more than 5 games. When times are hard, coaching will show. Questions in year 1 and 2, carry over year 3 and are beginning to show the real identity of this coaching staff.

Year 4. Off to an 8-4 start that could easily be 11-1 or 4-8 depending on the way you look at it (SOS is currently 310th). It’s a team that at the start of the season had FIVE 4-star talents starting. It’s a team that has the length and athleticism to defend and rebound with the best yet has the 187th DRtg, are 262nd in opponents 3P%, and are 248th in TRB with opponents at 35th. There offensive numbers aren’t much better besides being top 30 in 2P%. They are 319th in 3P%, 172nd in assists, and 100th in ORtg.

Defense and rebounding are a matter of coaching and will power! This team appears to be lacking both. If you watch closely, no one on defense, besides Big G, finds a man to put a body on. Many other times our bigs are too far under the basket to ever have a chance at the rebound. On defense, far too many times we play great D for 23 seconds of the shot clock, to only give up an easy look.

There are many questions and I am sure more will come to mind when I post this but see below for them.

What the heck do they do at practice?

This is an overarching question that can be teased out further below. Do they work on ball handling, not jumping for passes, defensive rotation, how to seal a man off for a rebound, etc? Because I do not see any of that in games.

Why does Tinkle insist on yelling and coaching every single possession?

Recently I saw a video of our new football defensive coordinator saying, “Practices are for coaches and games are for players.” I have heard this, or variations of it, many times from coaches. If during a game you must coach fundamentals or the game plan, you have failed in practice. Tinkle appears to be insistent on coaching during the game, yelling directly where players need to go, and calling out every single offensive possession. Not only is it annoying to watch, it instils in players that he does not trust them and causes them to second guess.

What is Tinkle’s offensive identity?

At least with Craig I knew what his offensive identity was, even if it looked nothing like the Princeton offensives I known. With Tinkle, I not know what he wants to achieve. And more specifically, the only play that comes to mind that I have liked, was a two man pick and roll with the bottom guy rolling off the top guy for a three. Tres has had success on that play. More specific questions below.

Why do we do not play in-out?

We have multiple guys that could do this, yet it never seems a priority. It’s unfathomable the number of times I have seen a big establish position and a guard not reward him. Currently Drew is shooting 68% but we still do not do this?

Why do we never run a high low action against a zone?

If you have ever watched a game with me, you have heard me rail on Tinkle’s zone offense for 4 years. We have the perfect antidote to a 2-3 zone in Tres but we never put him there. We will put twin towers in and still not run a high low action against the zone. What is this all about? Other questions regarding zone offense, why no use of the short corner? Why are they insistent on ball screens being done?

Why do we have zero inbounds plays?

If I had a dime for every time we inbounded the ball into the back court, I could buy courtside season tickets.

Why do we never put a man in the middle of the court when breaking a press?

Self-explanatory.

What happened to our zone defense?

The first years Tinkle was here, we played a variety of zone defenses and rarely were in man. The reasoning, we did not have the athletes nor depth to play man. But now we don’t go to it often enough. I believe it could be very effective with our lack of post depth and our length on the outside.

Why do we rarely, if ever, press?

Tinkle talked about depth and the goal of more transition buckets, but we never run a press.

Do they watch film?

I am dumbfounded at the number of times we have played right into our opponent’s strengths. A great example is in the Eastern Kentucky game. They had a guy that had not attempted a shot inside the 3pt line all season and we give up two 3pts right away? WHAT?!

Why have we not recruited a point guard?

It is obvious we have no real point guard on this team. Even with Jaqouri, we lacked a consistent ball handler and leader. Yet our 2018 recruiting class is 3 guys over 6’10”? According to 24/7, we didn’t even offer a PG. What is that all about? Also, should I trust their evaluations of PGs? I mean Ronnie is not a Power 5 D1 PG?

After the next couple of games, listen to post conference. Does Tinkle make excuses? Does he begin to temper expectations? More often than not that is what I hear and I could tolerate the first couple of years. But year 4? Everything is yours. You own it all. No more excuses. You show what you are made of.

I am still unsure if Tinkle is the man to lead us into the next level. He has yet to show us a fundamentally sound team. He has not shown us that he believes he can win here. Now is the time to prove you deserve this position.

Featured image from the Pac-12 Network

 

“I’m not mad, just disappointed…”

Featured“I’m not mad, just disappointed…”

By JD

Well, the crew has given me the keys to the site, so it’s time for my first post. It seems only fitting that it is in reaction to yet another early season meltdown by the Beavs. On Saturday, I had that sinking feeling that I have witnessed no fewer than a hundred times in my life of being a Beaver fan. Every year I think things will change. Every year, I have the hope that THIS is the year we will finally break out and are mentally tough enough to claim a victory (or at least keep the game close!) in one of these out-of-conference road games. Alas, even with the regime change from Riley to GA, the results stay the same.

If I had written this post on Saturday or Sunday, it would have been pretty much a long-winded rant. I had so much hope going into this game and this season, but that second half took it out of me. I was ready to vent. However, thanks to the guidance of the ever calm, cool, and collected Con, I was advised to take a more positive approach. After a good day-and-a-half of cooling off, I am ready. I like to think of this as the “good dad” approach. I’m not going to gloss over what went wrong, but I’m going to follow what went wrong with positives/areas of improvement. Just as this is the best way to raise a child, I believe this is the best (and most sane) way to try and be a Beaver fan. If you get over-the-top upset at each of these games, it’s going to be a long, miserable life.

Jake Luton

-What went wrong: It was quite the roller coaster day for Jake. It started out with the return of “Live Arm!” I thought this would be done and gone with Garretson off the field, but unfortunately not. After sailing it over Hodgins when he had a wide open TD on the opening drive, he proceeded to sail a couple more passes before making the safest throw ever to make sure he didn’t do it again to a WIDE OPEN Timmy Hernandez (I commented real-time that even Con could have thrown that TD). Things went well for the most part after that, until the back foot throws came out. If I am not mistaken, each of his picks came off of his back foot when there was pressure. I’m no QB (except for a few glorious year in Oregon State IM’s), but I know that is exactly what you are taught NOT to do (unless you are amazing like Aaron Rodgers). They were also usually thrown into double coverage, which adds to the recipe for disaster. That pick-six essentially ended the game.

Positives: As we heard from camp, Jake can make all the throws with ease. It’s nice to see someone who can sling the ball again. He doesn’t have to put all of his body into just throwing a slant route to the outside. While he did sail a few at the beginning, he settled in nicely and was quite accurate on his mid-range passes. There were some nicely thrown timing routes (the timing was on for those routes about 50% of the time, but to be expected for his first game). He does have a great connection with Togiai, which was on full display all game. His scrambling ability was very impressive. Numerous times he was able to avoid a costly sack and throw the ball away to save a drive. The most impressive plays on the day were by far the two TD’s to Togiai (yes I said two, because that’s what it was, despite what any garbage replay official says). The scramble to get to the sideline, and then the beautiful sidearm sling perfectly thrown so Togiai could come down in bounds with it. The wheel route to Togiai was a perfectly placed over the shoulder so that Beaverton HS alum (shoutout) Even Colorito couldn’t get to it. I expect Jake to improve in the decision-making department because, in terms of skill, he is what we have been sorely missing since the departure of Mannion.

Defensive Front Seven

-What went wrong: Everything… For most games this would be an exaggeration, but this may be pretty accurate. What was the most disappointing in this was that the two veteran leaders of the defense, Bright and Manase, had pretty terrible games. Bright was over-matched all day. He was continuously getting destroyed on outside run plays. He would kind of seal the outside, but would get blown back toward the sideline so much that his outside contain wasn’t worth much. He just kind of folded to the blocker and didn’t hold his ground. I noticed one time he was tired of getting destroyed attempting to keep contain, and instead jumped inside the blocker. This resulted in a 30-or-so yard touchdown run on that play. Manase seemed to take poor angles a good chunk of the game. What was worse were his multiple blatant missed tackles. The most embarrassing was on the fourth down play where he came up and kind of whiffed on the QB, allowing him to get the first down. Manase came up off the ground doing the “didn’t get it” crossing the arms back and forth motion when coming off the ground, only to notice that he did indeed get the first down. The last thing overall was the lack of effort in the second half. It seemed like the defense kind of gave up, which is pathetic. I get that the offense didn’t do you any favors, but you can at least finish the game out and keep from embarrassing yourself.

-Positives: Titus Failaluga was a bright spot on the day. He was getting after it, and had our only negative yardage play of the day. He was going so hard that he cramped up, got taken off on a cart, rode the bike for a few minutes, and then got back in the game. More players need to follow his example. There was also the perfect hit by Hughes-Murray that took all the wind out of the QB and resulted in a pick. We need more plays like that to get the 30 sacks and 30 turnovers GA wants this season.

For Bright and Manase, I think it may just be the “first game syndrome” (I just coined that). Remember how many missed tackles Bright had in the first game last year? I couldn’t even keep track of them. He went on from there to have a great season (before injury), so I think he will get it together and be one of our best defenders. We know Manase is legit. After the game, he talked about how the communication was poor on defense. As the leader of the defense trying to make all the calls and adjustments, maybe he was thinking too much instead of just playing. As he gets more comfortable with the calls and schemes, I believe he will get back to his old self. Another thing here: I hate making excuses, but the heat, altitude, and time of possession did look to take their toll on this unit. I don’t know why we agreed to move this game to August, but it looks like a huge mistake now. I hope that bye week in September is worth it!

Play Calling

-What went wrong: The play calling/RB substitutions seemed suspect most of the game. We finished last season steamrolling people on the ground, while throwing when necessary to keep the other team from stacking the box too much. This game deviated a lot from that strategy, especially in the second half. I get throwing more because they are loading up against the run, but completely abandoning the run game? We weren’t getting the greatest YPC (except for Nall being Nall on the TD), but it’s all a part of wearing them down and winning time of possession. It is by far our strength, so even if the other team tries to take it away, we shouldn’t just give up so easily. Our defense kept having to come back on the field with little to no rest in that second half, which compounded their failures. I think part of the reason for this is we were running spread option plays with Luton! He is not a threat to keep the ball at all, so those plays are totally worthless and destined for failure because the only way they even work are if the defense has to play the QB honest. We need to change the running calls with the QB we have this year, which seems obvious. When we do pass, why do we have to throw 40 yard bombs into double coverage? The short to mid-range passing game was working well, but we seemed to stray away from it for some reason in the 2nd half. Part of that is Luton’s decision-making, but, as GA says, the coaches need to put the players in positions to succeed. Also, as Con pointed out on Twitter, a few RB screens might be a better idea than the ones to Bradford and Hawkins that were total failures (or even the legendary tight end middle screen).

Another troubling part of the offensive coaching was the RB substitutions. There were LONG stretches of the game where Nall didn’t sniff the field. He is by far our best player. That is unacceptable! The TD came after he was out for like an entire quarter, so no wonder he was so jacked and ready to run. I understand getting him rest, especially with all the great backs we have, but why do they have to go with only one back per possession? It gets them all more involved, warm, and focused on the game if the substitutions are quicker and more regular. I hope this trend doesn’t continue. Nall needs his carries!

PS: No more fly sweeps to people who don’t know how to run in traffic.

PS, PS: Why the heck aren’t we going for it on 4 and 4 when it is a 52 yard field goal from the hash? We should have run Nall on third and fourth down and get those four yards.

-Positives: Our mid-range passing game was effective. It can definitely get better, but we picked up major chunks of yards and got key first downs with the 8-12 yard crossing routes and outs. I also loved the Ryan Nall wheel route. He catches better in traffic than most of our receivers! Another positive was the focus on Togiai. We need to keep feeding him (despite his unfortunate fumble) because he is currently our best receiver, and linebackers are no match for him, as we saw on Saturday. We also converted a third and short with a run (what a concept), thanks to Nall taking upon himself to make it to the marker. I think the coaches will (hopefully) look at what worked and what didn’t and game-plan accordingly. There were things that were working on offense, and Nall is still Nall. The Beavs just need to focus on those good things and remember what their strengths are.

O-Line

-What went wrong: As with Luton, it was a very up-and-down day for the O-Line. The real negative was the inability to get a great push up front for the running backs. There were multiple times where the running back was met in the backfield right after receiving the hand-off. The running backs were doing their best, and made the most of openings, but there was not a ton to be had throughout the day. There were also times were we got overpowered in pass-protection and let Jake get pressured into a bad throw.

Positives: I was very pleased with the pass protection in the first half. It seemed like Jake had all day to throw and had a huge pocket, which led to success. I’m thinking that fatigue caught up with them in the second half, especially as we stopped running as much and the defense could pin its ears back and go full out pass rush. Even still, we only gave up one sack on the day, which is solid. There were flashes of opening up holes in the run game. Nall’s run (obviously), but there were a few nice Pierce runs, and a Tyner run as well where there was actually some space to work.

DB’s

-What went wrong: My issues were with the huge cushions and the blown assignments. As a PAC 12 team against a MWC team, it was sad to see the huge cushions we were giving most of the game. They could throw a 5-yard slant/out/hook any time they wanted with ease. As a team that is supposed to have better athletes, that was unfortunate to see. It seems like it was kind of necessary too, because we still got beat deep multiple times. However, I do think that was mostly due to the second issue: blown assignments. The key 3rd down we gave up in the fourth quarter, the almost touchdown where the QB overthrew Gallup, and the walk-in touchdown on the crossing route all looked to be caused by missed assignments (especially by safeties) There is no reason for the safety to be behind a receiver in the middle of the field. On the 3rd down and almost TD, it looked like Moore realized he was out of place and kind of threw up his hands in frustration after each play. After the game, Crawford talked about communication and missed assignments (probably related to the 3rd down play where he had no safety help) as being a huge factor. One more thing I would like to see is getting off blocks better. The WR screen passes were way too effective, and there was one TD in the 4th quarter where the DB’s got ran-off and then blocked into the end zone for an easy score.

-Positives: We did get a pick (should have been two Brandon Arnold) which is somewhat of a good sign. Interceptions have been few and far between the past few seasons, so hopefully this is a sign of things to come. The safeties seemed to tackle better and give bigger hits than the LB’s on Saturday. It’s never good when your safeties are leading your team in tackles, but it is good to know that they are there, take good angles, and won’t give up big runs.

Atta-boys

Time to give some extra props to what went well on Saturday:

-Vitamin J is alive! He had good hands all day, seemed to be running pretty crisp routes, and was more of the Villamin we saw two years ago. Still needs to work on timing routes with Jake, but there were some well executed ones on Saturday. Looking to see his resurrection continue as we progress through the season, which will be a huge key to success.

speaking of keys…

-Kee Whetzel was playing with a purpose. There was one kickoff where he absolutely destroyed someone. It reminded me of Brandon Arnold a few seasons ago. He also got in on quite a few plays on defense. He is someone I know is not going to give up and will go hard every play.

-Loved seeing Trevorris Johnson as our 2-minute offense pass-blocking specialist. He did a great job picking up rushers, and even caught a key pass on the end-of-the-half TOUCHDOWN drive.

-Ryan Nall, of course.

-Sumner Houston: Didn’t notice any bad snaps or weird snap count procedural penalties. Great job for his first college game at center after switching from defense over the summer.

-Seth Collins was as fired up as ever on the sidelines even though he was hurt. Love seeing him lead with energy, and can’t wait to have him back.

 

Well, I will be watching next week’s game on DVR because my sister is getting married and all the family is in town. Hopefully it will be more of a pleasant experience with many more positives than this week.

It was still only the first game. No reason to give up hope yet! If we play like this in week 9 or 10, then I will be worried. For now, let’s all channel positivity and constructive criticism towards the Beavs so we don’t have to suffer through another long, painful season.

Go Beavs

-JD

Sunday Night/Monday Morning Film Session: OSU @ CSU

FeaturedSunday Night/Monday Morning Film Session: OSU @ CSU

By Con

New series we will be starting this season. We have decided to take in the latest game for OSU for a day, scour the internet for reviews of game and then conduct our own film session Sunday afternoon/night and Monday morning to provide our readers with musings.

Sunday morning usually is a lot of overreacting by all; positive and negative; so we feel the extra day gets the right mindset.

Game Theme: Third downs and quick changes.

The OSU offense and defense were too out of sink. The offense seemed like it would randomly do an on screen quick change popular in dancing and leave the defense with being on the field just too long. This is a stat PNW will be tracking the whole season.

Out of the 15 possessions OSU had on offense, 8 of them resulted in a quick change to the defense. Less than 1:30 taken off the clock and mostly 3 and outs. We also did not count the Ryan Nall 1 play drive.

This cannot happen on the road, in altitude with an opponent who has a top 25 offense. It’s more than 50% of the drives are virtually worthless. That need to be 25%.

This caused so much mental and physical stress on the defense, they just could not keep up.

The first half, the Beavers sustained drives, had TONS of third down conversions and limited the Rams on offense enough. Second half not so much.

Third Down Offense: 

Beavs were a quality 10/16 on third downs. The problem under this stat is this:

Out of the 16 third downs, 10 were 3rd and 6 or more. Only once out of the other 6 third downs under 6 yards did the Beavs not convert. That is an improvement from 2016. However, you simply cannot expect an offense to convert 3rd and 8, 3rd and 10 consistently. Play calling didn’t help. Shallow routes or RB dumps were available but not taken. Throwing on first and second down incomplete doesn’t help either.

Key Plays You Might Have Forgotten: 

+Right after the Bradford fumble, the D held strong and held to a FG. This could have been way worse.

+Luton escaped pressure many times. In fact, he was only TOUCHED by a defensive player behind the line 6 total times in the game. Pass pro is way ahead of 2016.

-4th and 1 Third Quarter: Rams driving on FIRST drive of second half and a 4th and 1 play action pass, Manase Hungalu whiffs on chance to take QB down on rollout, Rams go on and get a FG. Different ball game if the D comes out of halftime and stuffs Rams.

-Right after ^^^ this play, Brandon Arnold misses a layup interception and possible huge return in the end zone.

-3rd and 6 Fourth Quarter: Beavs just scored TD, Rams about to stall out and Xavier Crawford burned on a deep route and incredible catch with QB getting hit. Great catch but would have been another change if D holds.

5 Random Key Stats: 

  1. Third quarter scoring: 10-0 CSU. OSU continues to be done in by 3rd quarters.
  2. As mentioned above, Jake Luton was TOUCHED 6 times by CSU defenders behind the line.
  3. 11 counted and reasonable missed TFL’s by OSU defense.
  4. 3rd quater offense: 1 third down conversion, 2 INT. Not good.
  5. Andersen stated: 60% run plays, 40% pass as a goal. 47 pass plays. 29 runs. Ironically that is 61.8% pass plays… Hmmmm.

Final Thought: 

This all being said, so much overreaction by OSU’s honestly pathetic fan base. Some say 1-11, others say fire Andersen… Are you kidding me??? Cupboard was beyond bare just 2.5 years ago. Andersen’s recruits are all 19 and 20 and sophomores at best.

We finally have a playmaker at QB both positive and negative but no longer a game manger.

Yes we got out-physicalled in the end by CSU but PNW will go on record, CSU will go 10-2. They are a well coached team by all SEC rooted coaches. Senior QB with poise.

Calm down delusional Beaver fans, the sky is not falling. Still hope for 6 wins. That is the original expectation. Go Beavs.

 

Best Case/Worst Case: 2017 Beaver Football Preview

FeaturedBest Case/Worst Case: 2017 Beaver Football Preview

By Con/PNW

A nod to the Ted Miller. Previously ESPN.

Here we will run our best case/worst case scenario for the 2017 Oregon State Football season. All very real possibilities but extreme in both cases. Enjoy.

@ Colorado State:

Worst: Jake Luton gets messed up like Minnesota in 2016 with Darrell Garretson and we don’t run the ball enough as usual.

We lose 24-20.

Best: We hurt CSU like we hurt Utah 10 years ago and our defense doms and we just pound the crap out of the run game.

We win 20-10.

PSU:

We win.

Minnesota:

Worst: PJ rows his damn boat straight through beaver dam and we got out physicaled. Luton gets killed by that same defensive end that killed DG. DG comes in, almost leads comeback but pass batted down by d end on last drive. We lose 28-24.

Best: We get in PJ’s head and he throws his boat oar at us pre game. Their D end gets ejected for hitting Thomas Tyner high. Seth Collins throws punch and also gets ejected. We romper stomp them and Luton catches fire for 5 TD passes. 2 to Quintino Allen in Collins stead.

We win 49-17.

WSU:

Worst: Luton hurt so leading up we mind eff Leach and don’t announce starter. DG starts. Throws for 400 yards in shootout. We have full on QB controversy. He slings it like he is back at Chandler HS with Markus Wheaton.

We lose in shootout 52-49.

Best: Luton is fire. He pulls out 3 total TDs. 1 Rush, 2 pass. But the real story is Nall. He officially gets on his first Heisman ballot. 5 total TD. One throwing to Seth. 1 67 yard screen and run, 3 rushing. He bulls over a 300lb DT at goal line and then swims into the end zone channeling Civil War 2016. We break Luke Falks leg on a scramble late hit by Bright. Leach accuses Gary of dirty playing. Gary reveals Luke Falk is his long lost son from a one night stand at his JC college. Leach looks like an idiot saying Gary would hurt his own son. Gary and Luke hug at midfield post game.

We win 52-24.

UW:

Worst: Coach Pete first play Myles Gaskin poops on us and goes 75 yards on TD run. We can’t contain Browning on read option and he scrambles for 136 yards and 3 TDs. He is put as Heisman front runner. Coach Pete has mercy on us and we pull together in second half.

We lose: 41-27.

Best: Coach Pete first play is triple reverse throwback to Browning. Bright is suspended from killing Falk last game, but Adam Soesman comes out of no where and crushes Browning. He is concussed. Tries to come back but then Soesman kills him again on a high low sack. He crawls off field. However, UW has an all world true frosh QB come in. We struggle to move ball on O. Luton has nerves, we are 4-0 at this point and crack top 25… He throws 3 picks. Two pick 6’s. And one fumble. Eddie Dallas clamors for DG to enter game. DG comes in and gets hurt 6th play. All is not lost. Conor Blount comes in, throws screen pass to Tino first play. He busts it to the house. 17-17 ball game in fourth quarter. We are down to our Bright comes back in after first half suspension. Scoops and scores on a strip sack of the frosh QB. We up 24-17 with 2:18 to go. Coach Pete is not done though. Johnathon Smith has experience with a true frosh QB in these matchups. (Himself) Frosh QB loses shoe, but hyper from last series Bright jumps in air and whiffs. Frosh QB dumps pass to Gaskin, he goes 60 yards for TD. Coach Pete takes timeout with 13 seconds left to consider PAT or 2Pt. Gary is expecting Statue of Liberty. He is right. Elu busts the play up but he is overweight so he can’t make the tackle. But Craig Evans first game of season says hello. Kills Gaskin at 1 yard line. Review of play: Gaskin gets called that he broke plain first. Gary throws headset in disgust and goes Buddy Stephens on ref and knocks him out with one punch. Gary suspended for 2 games. NCAA admits wrong call. Team is fired up.

We lost 25-24.

USC:

Worst: We come out with some fire, as if to say we will not be pushed around by the spoiled children. We take a 21-0 lead with 2 scores by the D. Sam Darnold’s proclaimed Heisman run is doused by Kirk Herbstreit at half.

Second half he comes back with vengeance and lights our secondary up. Xavier Crawford out with cramping, Darnold throws 4 TDs and 300 yards second half. We throw the ball 60 times and Con is threading rope through his rafters as he is screaming “run the ball” on 2nd and 25.

We lose: 31-24.

Oh and Hawks get destroyed by Johnny Hekkers 3 TD passes off fake punts, 24-3.

Best: Gary is sitting with Con, Andy, JD and Braught pre game in their AirBnb. He can’t be 150 yards from stadium. He informs them that he has damaging intel on Willie and the boys down south and is going to reveal it 3 days before the civil war and promises he is doing his “routine” background checks on each involved.

Game kicks off, USC is in a funk. Sam Darnold is hurt but playing through. This is fresh meat to the Beaver D who is top 20 statistically. He is out by second quarter after hit after hit.

Luton is back after being benched. Throws for 4 TDs but also 3 picks. Nall gets hurt running out of bounds. Tyner takes over. Runs for 167 yards but fumbles twice. USC capitalizes. Back and forth we go. 35-34, Jordan Chouikar misses 43 yard field goal for win. Adley gets cut from OSU baseball team and vows to return next week at CU. Says Chouikar is poser.

We lose 35-34.

CU:

Worst: 1-5, murmurs are starting. Clune looking for way out, calls Kalani. Accepts D coordinator job minutes before kickoff. Gary is furious. Promotes graduate Jake Cookus to DC. Turns out to be promising.

Cookus sends the house every play. Our D backs our coach. Forces 6 turnovers, scores 3 TD’s. We stumble on O but do enough.

We win 27-14 in defensive domination.

Best: Gary is still suspended but we are 4-2 with two wins taken from us. Kevin Clune is acting HC. Reams Kevin McGiven after calling 4 straight pass plays. Takes playcard from him and burns it. Calls Mitch Singler out of press box to call plays. Calls 36 straight runs. And it pays off. Two drives stall but then o line gets warmed up. Nall rumbles for 160, Tyner 106, Arty 80 on 5 carries. 6 TDs between them. We comeback with vengeance. Stephen Montez cries postgame.

We win: 45-21.

Stan:

Worst: 2-5 but with hope. Makeshift defense. 3rd string QB on offense. Luton transfers mid season to UO. DG salivates as he has been planning this for 2 years but breaks ankle celebrating himself being started. Conor Blount starts the rest of season. Stanford pins us to ground. We have 136 total yards of offense.

We lose 20-0.

Best: Gary is back. After suspension he doesn’t apologize to ref but ref apologizes to him for blowing UW game. Stanford has no chance from beginning. David Shaw respectfully takes 3 knees first series in support of Gary being screwed. Comes back to bight him as Tino houses punt return. We have 5 sacks and two fumble recoveries and a blocked punt. Defense rules the day. Offense, who cares.

We win 31-13.

AZ:

Worst: Rich Rod gives hell shaking tongue lasting to wildcats about last year at Reser. AZ comes out, pounds us a la 2015. Nall lost for season, Conor Blount struggles. Two o lineman get diagnosed with left testicle cancer minutes after game. Our team is spent, AZ rolls, In and Out burger closes early on bus ride home.

We lose: 49-7

Best: We are consensus top 15 team because everyone knows UW was an inside job on refs. Gary doesn’t speak to media pre week or post game. Luton shines. Adley kicks 6 fgs coming back two weeks after Pat had cut him from baseball. Recovers 2 onside kicks. Rich Rods final straw of his job.

We win 32-20.

ASU:

Worst: Conor Blount has 3 games under his belt. Word from practice is “he is making us forget about Marcus McMaryion.” Proves it on field. Throws for 3rds, runs for another. Kolby Taylor gets in game and scores 2 TDs and throws pitchfork at Sparky. Suspended for rest of season. Jake Cookus struggles as teams have film on his “Engage 8” defensive style. ASU scores a lot. But fumbles away PAT snap on last TD. We go up 42-41 with minutes to go. They get onside kick though, Their crazy RB runs 49 yards on us but he needed 50. Arnold tracks him down and punches ball out. Touchback. Conor Blount tears ACL taking a knee.

We win 42-41.

Best: we are 8-2. Poised for PAC 12 championship birth. UW is 9-0 though. No thanks to refs. They are playing lowly Cal. Beau Baldwin calls magnificent game, Cal squeaks out win, 35-32. This is pregame. Gary smiles.

Luton has another solid outing, throws 2tds and runs one in. Tyner is benched though to save him for civil war. He agrees. Nall as well. Arty steals the show. Him and Tre Johnson combine for 236 yards, 3 TDs. We run train on ASU on D. Force 3 turnovers, 7 sacks. We reach 30 sacks on season but only 26 turnovers. We need more Gary says postgame. Todd Graham resigns. Gary hints postgame for first media session since week 5, that “a storm is coming.” Gina asks “what’s a storm?” Danny says “I have an interview scheduled. Need to leave and do routine background check on Gary Andersen.” Gina fired for not doing routine background check on John Canzano.

We win 42-22.

Willies dog poop:

Worst: *********** no comment.

We end season 3-9. Tino transfers. Nall declares for NFL, Tyner transfers back to UO for 6th year through some loophole, says “it’s where I belong”

Willie hires Gary as D coordinator. Gina now runs Oregonian with Canzano. They get married. Danny Moran becomes private detective. Pat Casey declines AD job that Scott Barnes leaves at end of season, takes job at LSU. Says “if you can’t beat em, join em.”

Beavers hire Brady Hoke as HC. He brings in Mark Helfirch to run offense. Mitch Singler promoted to recruiting coordinator. All Gary’s assistants fired. Hired by Buddy Stephens after. Brittney Wagner becomes academic counselor at UO and school is praised for its “diversity” and “acceptance.”

Bobby D comes back as AD. Tres retires from basketball. Ethan Thompson never becomes eligible.

Best: 2 days before game day, “anonymous sources” confirm that Willie covered up Marcus Mariota prostitution ring during his recovery in Eugene this summer. Deal was Mariota brings in prostitutes and sets up recruits with them, he gets to train and recover for free at his own sports complex. Offensive coordinator found out about scheme, went on drunken stooper, hence his DUI charge months before. Canzano breaks story. Same “anonymous source” emails background check of Willie. Turns out, at Western Kentucky he was sued for “sealed crimes” but in Kentucky they unsealed them just for fun. He payed refs nation wide to change outcome of games in his gambling favor to fund his future recruiting endeavors. Story goes national. One of the refs payed was head review ref from UW game. Gary pre game media says “What goes around comes around. We run the state btw.” Canzano gets promoted pre game to Lindsey Schnells old position of covering Mike Riley 24/7. Mike Riley says “that’s swell”

Swirling in turmoil the game begins. A crisp day at Autzen, the PNW crew already mind boggling the Autzen fans. Willie somehow allowed to coach in game. Different fortunes than 2016. we throw 60 times for 734 yards and 6 TDs. Nall and Tyner just watch from sideline as they are resting for PAC 12 championship by halftime. It is announced in Autzen that UW got blown out by WSU in Apple cup. Mike Leaches final game. He retires due to Alzheimer’s he has had for 20 years in secret. UW ends season in 3 game losing streak putting us solely in first place in north. We trample UO like a tackling dummy. Con gets bored during game and proclaims “I’m tired of winning”

We win 70-13.

We go to PAC 12 championship, beat USC on reverse fortunes with Adley making game wining 68 yard field goal.

Gary is carried off. We book tickets to Rose Bowl. Play Ohio State in prep for 2018, kick the living daylights out of them. Urban Meyer dies of stroke postgame. All his recruits leave and join the “real OSU.”

Nall comes back for senior year. Says “I’m not finished.” We roll into 2018 with another date with the Buckeyes except they have no coach or recruits. We are poised for a National Championship run in 2018.

Willie stays in as head coach. Is bowl banned for 3 years. Loses 20 scholarships for 3 years. Has recruiting class of 5 players. 4 from Redmond high school. 1 from Churchill. Their o line coach becomes offensive coordinator at UW. Kevin McGiven gets Western Michigan head coaching job. Jonathan Smith comes back to OSU with full on homecoming parade starting at the top of the cock. Becomes our coach in waiting and Offensive Coordinator.

Both scenarios likely. Which will it be?

Happy Eclipse. 5 days.

Corvallis Super Regional Preview

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-11-14,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y

By Braught / PNW Sports Fans

The reward for the Beavers after pummeling the LSU kitty cats is a top 10 match up with the University of Minnesota. Besides the great series we will witness this weekend, the best thing to come out of this is our reminder about how much Scott Barnes looks like the Minnesota mascot, Goldy. Google it! You’ll thank me later.

Minnesota (44-13)  won the Big Ten conference regular season and the Big Ten conference Tournament before hosting a regional that included UCLA. The Gophers beat the Bruins twice to advance on.

Probably as no surprise to anyone in the west, I have not watched any Big Ten baseball besides when in Surprise, AZ for the Pac 12 – Big Ten challenge in February. What I do know is that Minnesota’s ace is Freshman Patrick Fredrickson, who was the Big Ten pitcher of the Year and is a Freshman All American . In 14 games, 92 IP,  he went 9-0 with a 1.76 ERA (18 ER total) and an impressive 70 to 24 strikeout to walk ratio. Opponents only batted .205 against him. That is Heimlich like (.211). And to make it worse, he’s from Gig Harbor, we could of had him. From what I have read, he has been there day 2 starter and Reggie Meyer (8-3, 2.62) has been there Day 1 starter. In the pen or day 3, they have Brett Schulze, who also was 9-0 albeit in 51.2 IP. He gives up a few more hits, with an OBA of .269 and 51 hits total. Their closer is Max Meyer, a freshmen who’s OBA is .156 in 40 IP and was named Freshmen Reliever of the Year today.

Their offense seems quite balanced like the Beavers but I do not know what Big Ten pitching or the parks are like to know if it is legit. They are led by 3rd round pick, SS Terrin Vavra, who was a 1st team All American this year. He is generally in the 3 hole and his OPS of 1.094 and 10 HRs lead the Gophers. Their lead off is generally 2B Luke Pettersen and his .408 OBP, followed by LF Ben Mezzenga and his .463 OBP.  And in the 4 hole is Ean Wilson, son of Dan Wilson of Mariner Catcher fame, who is pretty good hitter himself, .825 OPS and 5 HRs. The first three guys are Juniors or Seniors, so they have veteran experience and leadership.

The Gophers are not a team to be overlooked. They have all the talent and leadership necessary to come in a knock the Beavers out. I would still give the edge to the Beavers and believe a two game sweep should occur.

The Beavers are marching out a 1st round talent in Luke Heimlich, the gamer Bryce Fehmel, and their top 6 pitchers were all drafted, or will be drafted, in the top 10 rounds. There is just too much experience to lose. Not to mention the Goss Stadium crowd they will be playing in front of. The Beavers are 10-2 in Super Regionals at Goss. I expect that to be 12-2 after this weekend.

See you at the park.

-Braught

Beavers looking for momentum heading into June

By Andy / PNW Sports Fans

The Beavers wrap up the regular season with a home series against the 17th ranked UCLA Bruins in what will serve as a good measuring stick for where this team is at heading into postseason play.

Sure, OSU still technically has a chance to repeat as PAC 12 Champions. However, that will require the Beavs to not only sweep a strong Bruins team, but Stanford would also need get swept by Washington. So while unlikely, it’s not impossible.

Sure, an improbable late PAC 12 title push would be awesome, but I’m more concerned with what the Beavers can control this week. I want to see how the team responds against a solid contender after yet another Sunday letdown. I believe coach Casey will have the guys ready to go and looking to make a statement before Selection Monday.

If the Beavers play to their ability, they should be able to take two out of three and have a punchers chance at a sweep.

Forget the conference title, there are also other major postseason implications on the line this weekend. If the Beavers take care of business, they should end up with a national seed and wouldn’t have to play on the road again until Omaha.

To make those possibilities a reality and get the best of UCLA this weekend, Oregon state will need customary outings from Luke Heimlich and Bryce Fehmel. Those two are as good as any 1-2 punch in all of baseball. The question (as it has been all season) is who can provide a decent start in game three? Kevin Abel has shown glimpses of being the guy, but has struggled with control at times. Finding another reliable starting arm is something the Beavers desperately need if they want to make another deep run.

Aside from starting pitching, the bats will need to get back to form. This really isn’t something I’m all that concerned with. This squad has maybe the best 1-9 lineup I’ve ever seen. I doubt they will have multiple clunkers in a single week.

Do my keys to success seem like an oversimplification? Are you thinking to yourself, “Connor could’ve come up with that analysis!”? Good! Because it is simple! This team is immensely talented and coached by a freaking legend! Yeah, the keys to success are simple. The only consistent issue all year has been finding a reliable third starter. That’s honestly all the 2018 Beavers are missing at this point. Sure, they aren’t 56-6, but I will take 42-9 any time. That’s an incredible record and shows that they are certainly capable of getting back to TD Ameritrade Park and finishing what they started a year ago.

I’m looking forward to a great weekend of baseball and seeing what sort of momentum Oregon State will take into the regional.

until then,

Go Beavs!