The Beavers beat Utah last night 24-7 in a dominating defensive, ball-control type of game. Great second half :)
First, the scoreboard was great (except for the red tint). Very clear, very big, very cool. They should play classic sports movies after the games. People could hang out like a big drive-in movie.
The "other" new scoreboard was great too. Bright and it adds some flair to the other side of the stadium.
On to the game.
I just love our defense. I love the way we sub heavily, thus getting everyone lots of experience and keeping everyone fresh. I love the speed and intensity of the hits. And I love that missing a tackle is very rare (even on punt/KO coverage). The defense will be the reason we are good this year.
The running game got off to a great start and basically carried the team. Yvenson is such a stud. It will be interesting to see where he ranks in the hearts of Beaver fans all-time after this season. He may have an epic season.
The passing game and the uniforms (see reaction) were pretty much the worst part of the game. I can live with the uniforms, but the QBs and WRs need to get better. And they will. I think Canfield has earned the right to start until he proves otherwise (8-19, 11-19 if you add in the drops). And I'm really excited about the young guys on the team (Rodgers, Catchings, Croom, and Gabe Miller). I think the future looks bright. And the present. I don't think drops will be a problem once the QB situation settles down.
A few notes:
* Sammie Stroughter was really getting involved on the sidelines. He was in most of the huddles and was in the screen for play calling. Even if he decides to take the year off, he will be huge in asserting his leadership skills.
* Who is Slade "third-down" Norris and when did he get good?
* I really hope Jeremy Perry is OK.
* The new kickoff distance is going to be interesting. There may be some records broken this year in the NCAA for return TDs.
* Did the clock seem to move really fast? I think there were some changes that made things move even quicker. Of course it could have been due to the breaking in of two new QBs.
It was a horrible day for pics, but here's what I have: 2007: Utah Game
Friday, August 31, 2007
The Beavers beat Utah last night 24-7 in a dominating defensive, ball-control type of game. Great second half :)
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
I keep wanting to sit down and hammer out a season prediction, but haven't yet. Besides me being lazy, I honestly don't know how this season will end up. I agree with Kevin Hampton at the G-T: Its anyone's guess.
We will know a lot more after Utah, but I have a feeling that it could be another wild season. I think the standard for this season is 7-5. If its a good season, we'll be better than that. If we play bad, it could be worse.
* The Defense. Our defense should be top notch this year with nearly everyone coming back and most of our depth still intact. Pressure the QB and stop the run will be our M.O. If we have a great season this year, it will be because our defense was dominating.
* The O Line. This is the strength of our offense. If you are going to have a strength, this is a good place to start. We should be able to keep the ball moving because of these guys.
* Running Back. Yvenson Bernard will probably be our 2nd or 3rd best receiver this year in addition to rushing for 1300 yards. Think 2005 when Joe Newton was out.
The Question Marks:
* The QB. The old saying is, if you have 2 QBs you don't have any. I'm a believer in that saying until proven otherwise. However, I think they both are good enough that we will be able to move the ball through the air.
* Special Teams. I think we'll be pretty good on special teams, but we scored a lot of points off special teams last season. Losing Sammy, Coye, and Loomis are HUGE blows. We will have to be that much better in all other phases of the game.
* The secondary. Without Sabby, will the secondary regress back to 2005? Well, I think the front 7 had more to do with the secondary improvement than Sabby. And they are all back. Pressure the QB and the secondary will be fine. Plus, I think Drayton will be good. Real good.
Final prediction? Ug. I'll say 8-4. The QBs get it together just in time to start the Pac-10 season off right. We beat either UCLA, Cal, or ASU early and sweep through the preseason schedule to start 6-2 going into USC. We go even the rest of the way and go to another bowl game.
Go Beavs against Utah!
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Sammie Stroughter has released a statement through OSU:
Stroughter releases statement ... Riley comments - OregonLive.com: Behind The Beavers Beat
"On behalf of the family, I would like to take this time to release a brief statement regarding recent practices missed prior to the official start of the season. During the past year my family and I have experienced a considerable amount of grief and mourning due to the passing of two family members who were important male role models in my life. In addition to these losses, Coach Jim Gilstrap, who recruited me to OSU, passed away this summer.
"These losses have taken my entire family by storm and the grief from these incidents has affected each one of us differently. It has been the decision of my immediate family and I that I take whatever time needed to get over what I am personally experiencing due to the sudden changes in my life. Academics and football are very important to me and I appreciate all of the support I've received from the entire OSU coaching staff, teammates, faculty and the loyal supporters of Oregon State football.
"Also, I would like to extend my prayers and support to the Gilstrap family. My football career would not have been possible without Coach Gilstrap's help and guidance.
"As you may know, my walk with Christ is strong; I know that he will get my family and I through this difficult season. 'I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me' ( Phil 4:16.)"
My guess is that he will Redshirt this season and can come back this year or next if he stays in school.
Beaver Nation is with you Sammie. Wish you the best.
Sunday, August 19, 2007
I watched nearly all of the scrimmage on Saturday and I'm cautiously optimistic about the season.
* In addition to Gerrard Lawson; Anthony Brown, Chris Johnson, and Rodgers were all practicing Kick Off returns.
* I think we returned like 3 KOs for a TD. So no drop off there.
* I think Canfield should be the starter. He has a better delivery, throws a better ball, and makes less mistakes.
* Moevao doesn't look bad throwing it, but something bothers me about his delivery. It feels like he will get his passes knocked down at the line of scrimmage. Moevao got a ton of reps (3x Canfield) and moved the ball pretty well. His scrambling ability sure helps a lot though.
* Moevao threw at least two near interceptions into a lot of defenders. That didn't really show up in any of the articles, but really those should have been interceptions.
* McCants does look good, but he did fumble once.
* Sieverson looked pretty good too at RB. Maybe he will end up filling in at FB.
* Anthony Brown, Catchings, Rodgers, Morales, and Powers all looked good as receivers.
* Chris Johnson isn't quite up to Sammy's level yet, but he had an OK game.
* The defense looks great. We would have had a ton of sacks if they would have let us get the QB.
* Gabe Miller looks ready to play and that was great.
* I think they should convert John Reese to a WR. He could be an awesome big receiver. He will be the leading TE reciever this year. They just have to find a way to use him.
That's it! Check out my photos below for a look and the new stadium!
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
Baseball America published their recruiting wrap up today. With the pro signing period passed, anyone who wasn't signed is committed to play for the Beavers for the next three years. OSU (and UNC) were declared winners.
Winners And Losers–College Style - Baseball America
The Beavers and Tar Heels have pushed all the right buttons over the past few years, and things worked out swimmingly for OSU again last night. Oregon State held onto infielder Garrett Nash, a Utah high schooler drafted by the Rangers in the fourth round who was described by one coach today as “electric”. Plus the Beavers added two big-time arms in Oregon prep righthander Greg Peavey (111), a 24th-round pick by the Yankees, and Utah prep lefty Tanner Robles (112), a 14th-rounder by the Angels who debated attending the Community College of Southern Nevada but ended up opting for Oregon State, according to the coaching staff at CCSN. Then there’s righthander Kevin Rhoderick (125), an 18th-rounder by the Tigers who was originally slated to succeed Joshua Fields as Georgia’s closer. But with Fields returning to Athens, Rhoderick decided to opt out of his commitment and set course for Corvallis, where he figures to be a vital cog in the bullpen. If that weren’t enough, the Beavers also retained ace righty Mike Stutes, a ninth-round pick by the Cardinals who went unsigned.
The losers included a couple of Pac-10 rivals: Stanford and UW.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
With fall camp in full swing and the season fast approaching, the media is ramping up its coverage of the season. First up to TiVo is the Fox Sports Season Preview.
Oregon State Beavers Football Preview
FSN (Channel 34)
Wed. August 15th, 7:00 pm
Thu. August 16th, 1:30 pm
Sat. August 18th, 3:30 pm
Sat. August 18th, 7:30 pm
Sat. August 25th, 6:00 pm
Mon. August 27th, 1:30 pm
You may want to do some scouting and check out some of our Pac-10 rivals.
Green (with envy) (FSN - 34): Wed. August 15th, 7:30 pm
Wash. St. (FSN - 34): Wed. August 15th, 8:00 pm
Washington (FSN - 34): Wed. August 15th, 8:30 pm
There are replays around the other Beaver replays as well.
If you get Fox Sports Pacific (415 on Comcast), then you can find all the other Pac-10 previews replayed on Saturday, August 15th.
Also, if you live in the Corvallis area the lunch-time (12-2) Joe Beaver Show is back! You can bet Mike Parker and John Warren will be talking with a lot of OSU coaches and players leading up to the season.
Monday, August 13, 2007
If Vegas were to lay odds on Sammy Stroughter playing for the Beavers this year, I think it would have opened today at around 3 to 1 against. 6 days is a long time. Plus, the Official OSU Home Page has taken down all ads with Sammy in them. It's now all Yvenson all the time. The final nail in the coffin was this from Mike Riley via Cliff Kirkpatrick's Blog:
“For every player that’s not at practice or hurt, we have to prepare for the alternative,” Riley said. “But we don’t know about this one. I don’t know any more than the last time we talked.”
Ouch. I'm officially hoping we have a great punt returner waiting in the wings. Sammy was a good receiver, but he was a game-changer in the punt return game last season. Our special teams are turning into the biggest question mark of the camp.
For the memories...
Chris could be a good one...
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Saturday, August 04, 2007
I made it to my first practice of the year today and it was great to see football again.
Its always hard to know how most people are doing because I don't know the plays, but generally things looked good.
* Sammy Stroughter looked good. I don't think there's anything to the unhappy rumor. He may be unhappy, but he'll be fine in a week or two. He dropped one pass that was his, but in the scrimmage he made some good plays.
* The O-line looks good early on.
* Kyle Brown is looking better than last year. He's making more catches and made an awesome leaping grab in the scrimmage. If he can use his height like that, watch out.
* John Reese stood out the most for me among the tight ends. He made a nice grab and TD run in the scrimmage. He looks more like a WR than a TE. Didn't really look at his blocking, so no news there.
* Ryan McCants looks like Clinton Polk when he carries the ball. He looked good in the few plays I saw.
* Some of the lesser known WRs (Kjos, Morales) can catch nicely and could be great backups this year.
* Sean Canfield looked good on some of the long throws in the scrimmage.
If you're going to a practice here's a couple of tips:
* Bring a chair. The bleachers are turned the wrong way so the seating is very limited.
* Bring water. There is lots of shade, but no refreshments. Bring something to drink.
* Print a roster. The guys have names on the back, but the names are really hard to read. The numbers are pretty easy to read. Print a roster here.
On my way out I snapped a few pics of Raising Reser - Phase 2. The scoreboard is looking great. Looks like they are hustling to get the new entrance finished by the Utah game. They were working today.
Apparently there is more drama in fall camp. And this deals with one of the linch-pins for this coming season, Sammy Stroughter.
First, I ready in today's G-T that Sammy is currently "off-limits" to the media:
Something is going on with Sammie Stroughter, but I don’t know what, yet. OSU officials call it personal issues, but he is expected to be at practice Friday.
However, OSU is putting people around him so no media, no OSU marketing or anyone else can get to him for about a week. The purpose is “to allow him to be an athlete and student.”
I think this shield is going to create more than it stops. Hopefully, Stroughter will be his usual outgoing self and clear this up soon so it doesn’t linger on throughout the season.
Then I read in the comments on Cliff's blog on a different post:
# Tony Says:
August 2nd, 2007 at 5:01 pm
I heard a rumor that Sammy Stroughter who is really good friends with Coye was upset with Riley’s decision and not coming back for his senior. Please tell me he is on campus.
Well, he is clearly in camp, but I don't like the fact that he's not happy. If Tony is right, then perhaps Coye's dismissal wasn't as cut and dry as we think.
Boy, I sure hope the drama dies down a bit as we get going.
I'll be going to the practice today and see how the team looks. My wife attended yesterday's practice and said the team looked good. She mentioned the new TE Reese by name, so he must have done something good. She also overheard the coaches saying the teamwork was starting off good on the first day. Well, that's good news.
Loomis quits; Serna to punt - Corvallis Gazette-Times
“We take so much pride, and I spend so much time thinking about special teams and wanting it to be good,” Riley said. “This has been disruptive.
“I want it to look good and be good.
“We were thrown for a loop because we thought we had our guy for three more years.”
Senior PK Alexis Serna will be the punter this season.
“The special teams stuff is concerning,” Riley said. “I’m feeling better having Alexis wanting to do it. And I watched him punt before. I really believe he will do a good job for us. He is a poised and competitive young man. He came to me about doing it. I think we’ll be fine.”
Now next year we will have two new kickers to break in. It could be veeeeeeerry interesting in 2008. Yikes!
Now special teams goes to the same level as the QB battle as something to watch this fall.