Could you ask for anything more from a Civil War?

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Could you ask for anything more from a Civil War?

How Oregon lost: If the Civil War taught us one thing, it's that Sunday is going to be fun. Because that is exactly when these two teams will meet again. This match up was a thrill from start to finish that had 6,704 screaming fans on their feet. The Ducks had no answer early when the Beavers hit their first 7-for-7 shots from three-point range and quickly had to dig out of a 10-point hole. Helping Oregon climb out was sophomore guard Sabrina Ionescu who finished and lead all scores with 35 points and six assists. With time windind down and a three point Oregon State lead, the Ducks found their sure-handed Ionescu, not afraid to take the big shot, absolutely drilled a three-pointer to bring this game into overtime. The crowd stunned, the Ducks bench going wild, and five more glorious minutes were to be played at Gill Coliseum Friday night. 

In the end, Oregon looked like it ran out of gas. It's five starters each played over 35 minutes, with Ionescu and junior guard Maite Cazorla playing the full game and all of overtime. Oregon State controlled the ball and got good looks to finish off the Ducks 85-79 and keep their win streak over Oregon alive to 14 games in a row.

"It was a good basketball game, both teams played with a lot of intensity and a lot of heart," said Oregon coach Kelly Graves. "God dang one of these days, I'd like to beat the Beavers for crying out loud. They got a good team, no doubt about it. Gulich [Marie] was great, Tudor [Kat] tonight, I mean come on that kid was unconscious. The good thing is we get them in two days, I guess. And that's also the bad thing..."

What it means: Before tipoff, it was announced that senior guard Lexi Bando is out indefinitely with a leg injury. Graves said he doens't know anything about her diagnosis or timetable of return and chooses to leave that up to the doctors. So Oregon decided to go with a bigger lineup with 6'-5" sophomore forward Mallory McGwire. McGwire had to shake some nerves in the first quarter, but really stepped up in the second half finishing with a near double-double 10 points and nine rebounds. 

Oregon will face Oregon State again in just about 40 hours. How much change to the game plan can there be in just that short amount of time?

Graves said, "I think I did a poor job tonight in we became too predictable down the stretch. Well, so did they, we both go to our bread and butter late. I thought we were going to get them in overtime, had the momentum obviously and just didn't make the plays."

These teams are so evenly matched that it is just a recipe for a good game. 6' 5" Marie Gulich vs. 6' 4" Ruthy Hebard on the inside. Hot shooters Kat Tudor vs. Sabrina Ionescu on the outside. Tudor lead all Beavers' scores with 34 points off 10-for-14 from the field and 7-of-10 from three-point range. Tough guard play from Mikayla Pivec vs. Maite Cazorla. Match ups everywhere.

High flying Ducks: Only three Ducks to score in double figures tonight: Ionescu with 35, Hebard finished with 24 points and seven rebounds, and McGwire with 10. Ionescu and Hebard were the only Oregon players who shot free throws tonight.

Foul play: Oregon committed 19 total teams fouls. McGwire fouled out of the game in overtime.

Up next: Another Civil War in about 40 hours. Oregon hosts Oregon State at 5 PM (PT) on Sunday at Matthew Knight Arena.  

 

Ducks get stuck in the Dam: Round 1 of the Civil War goes to the Beavers

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Ducks get stuck in the Dam: Round 1 of the Civil War goes to the Beavers

How Oregon lost: A missed layup on one end and a three-pointer on the other is what sparked a major momentum swing away from the Ducks. Coming out of halftime, and down 30-29, Oregon slowly let this game slip from its wings and couldn't handle the Beavers second-half surge. The Ducks coughed up 10 turnovers, 12 second-chance points, and nine offensive rebounds in the second half alone. In the end, Oregon (11-5, 1-2 Pac-12) couldn't get it together and lost 76-64 to Oregon State (10-5, 2-1 Pac-12) in the 349th chapter of the Civil War.  

Oregon coach Dana Altman said, "They just out-worked us, there is no other way to say it. Second half their offensive boards really didn't give us an opportunity. We took some really tough shots, at times bad shots, our ball movement wasn't very good from any of our players, so we got a lot of work to do and really disappointed in effort. I don't want to take anything away from Oregon State. They simply played harder than we did the second half."

The Ducks shot 36% from the field, going 8-for-29 from three-point range.

What it means: Altman is still trying to put the pieces together. A big change in roster from last season's final four run to now. It is early in the season, but Oregon heads into two tough road opponents, Arizona State and Arizona, followed by two home games, USC and UCLA, still making the same mistakes as earlier in the season.

"Our ball movement has got to really improve if we're going to have a good offensive team," said Altman. "Our toughness and our rebounding are going to have to improve if we're going to have a good defensive team. Right now, I'm not sure if the guys believe what I'm telling them. We got a lot of new guys, and they don't understand the competitiveness of conference games and how tough it's going to be. So we got a lot of work there."

Redshirt junior forward Paul White said, "I wouldn't say it's been hard getting into our offense, it's just sometimes there is a little miscommunication, but that's nobody's fault. As a team, we got to relay the message as we hear it from coach. That's the team's fault if we are getting into our offense a little slow or it's not looking as efficient."

High flying Ducks: White lead all Oregon scores with 16 points, six rebounds, and five assists. Freshman guard Victor Bailey Jr. was the only other Ducks player to score in double figures with 11 points off the bench.

Foul play: Sophomore guard Payton Pritchard found the bench early picking up two quick fouls. Freshman forward Kenny Wooten fouled out with one minute left in the game.

Up next: Oregon will hit the road south to face Arizona State (12-2, 0-2 Pac-12) at 7 PM this Thursday in Tempe, AZ.

Time to re-Build The Dam: 2018 National Signing Day

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Time to re-Build The Dam: 2018 National Signing Day

After finishing 0-9 in the PAC-12 conference, the Oregon State Beavers football team will look a bit different next season. A complete rebuild of the coaching staff, the hiring of former player Jonathan Smith to build the dam as head coach, and bringing back a familiar face to the crowd in assistant head coach Mike Riley (OSU head coach from 1997-1998, 2003-2014), the Beavers are starting this next season off from scratch. On this National Signing Day, Beavers football have signed 11 new committs to their roster.

Here is a list of their commits:

 

 

Oregon State names Jonathan Smith head football coach

Oregon State names Jonathan Smith head football coach

CORVALLIS -- Jonathan Smith, one of the most successful student-athletes in Oregon State University history, has been named head football coach of the OSU Beavers, Vice President and Director of Athletics Scott Barnes announced Wednesday. His appointment is contingent on the completion of all university hiring processes.

“We are very excited about having Coach Smith lead our program,” Barnes said. “We interviewed several qualified candidates and Coach Smith emerged as our top choice.  He brings to Oregon State football an impressive plan to build our program. He has a unique perspective on what it means to be a part of Beaver Nation and to be successful for our student-athletes on and off the field.”

Smith is the first OSU graduate to serve as a Beaver head football coach. He returns to Corvallis after a highly successful stint at the University of Washington as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.  Smith spent the last four years with Washington, helping the Huskies to the Pac-12 Conference 2016 championship, an appearance in the College Football Playoff and ending the year with a No. 4 Associated Press Poll ranking. Washington earned a share of the Pac-12 North division title this season, and is ranked No. 13 in the nation while awaiting its selection to a bowl game.  

“I want to thank President Ray and Scott Barnes for their confidence in presenting me this opportunity to return to Oregon State University to be the head coach,” Smith said. “I also want to express my gratitude to Coach (Chris) Petersen for providing me a path to realize my dream as a head coach.”

With Smith as offensive coordinator, the 2016 Huskies narrowly missed setting a school scoring record, averaging 41.8 points, which was tops in the Pac-12 and eighth in the nation.

The 38-year-old Smith molded junior Jake Browning, the first true freshman season-opening starting quarterback in Huskies’ history, into one of the top players at the position in the country. Browning was the 2016 Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year and has been among the top candidates for the Heisman Trophy over the last two seasons. 

As a student-athlete, Smith was a four-year letterman quarterback at Oregon State from 1998-2001.  He joined the program as a walk-on from Glendora, Calif. Smith earned his first start on Oct. 31, 1998 and never relinquished that role for the final 38 games of his career. The two-time team captain led the Beavers to the 1999 Oahu Bowl and the 2001 Fiesta Bowl, where OSU capped an 11-1 season with a dominating 41-9 victory over Notre Dame and a No. 4 final Associated Press ranking.

“Oregon State University is a special place and I have many memories of being a part of Beaver Nation,” Smith said. “I played for some of the best coaches I have ever been around and learned many of the qualities I have utilized in my coaching career.”

Smith left OSU as the school’s all-time leading passer with 9,680 yards -- he now ranks third among all Beaver quarterbacks in total passing yardage. At the time of his graduation his records included career touchdown passes (55); single-game passing yards (469 yards vs. the Huskies); and single-season passing yards (3,053 yards in 1999). He still holds the mark for the longest touchdown pass at 97 yards to Chad Johnson in 2000. Smith left OSU ranked No. 3 at the time in conference history for passing yards and total offense.

“I’m in the process of putting together a coaching staff that will share the same vision and goals that I have for this program,” Smith added. “I’m looking forward to working with the young men we currently have in the program and solidifying a recruiting class.”

His honors as a player were numerous while wearing the Orange and Black. He was the Fiesta Bowl Offensive Most Valuable Player, earned Pac-10 Conference Offensive Player of the Week multiple times and was a two-time member of the Pac-12 Honorable Mention team.

Smith succeeded as a graduate assistant coach in 2002 and 2003 under both Dennis Erickson and Mike Riley, respectively. He helped the Beavers to the 2002 Insight Bowl and 2003 Vegas Bowls, and in the process assisted in the grooming of longtime NFL quarterback Derek Anderson.

Smith’s first full-time coaching position came at the University of Idaho in 2004, where he served as the quarterbacks coach through 2009. In his final season with the Vandals, the team ranked ninth in the NCAA for total offense (451.4 yards per game); 12th in the nation for passing offense (286.7 yards per game); and 20th in scoring (32.7 points per game). Under Smith, Vandals quarterback Nathan Enderle finished the year ranked No. 5 in the NCAA in passing efficiency.

From 2010-11, he was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) powerhouse University of Montana, leading the Grizzlies to the NCAA Division I semifinals in 2011. While Smith was at Montana, the Grizzlies’ offense ranked in the top 20 nationally in multiple categories.

Smith joined Boise State University for the 2012 and 2013 seasons as the Broncos’ quarterbacks coach and helped guide the team to the 2012 Mountain West Conference co-championship and to a victory over the Washington Huskies in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Following the 2013 regular season at Boise State, Smith followed head coach Chris Petersen to the University of Washington to serve as the Huskies’ offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.

A three-year starting quarterback at Glendora (Calif.) High, Smith graduated from high school in 1997 and earned his bachelor's degree in liberal studies from Oregon State in December, 2001.

He and his wife, Candice, have three children, Robert (9 years old), Bella (7) and Charles (3).

COACHING HISTORY

2014-2017 – Washington – Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
2012-2013 – Boise State – Quarterbacks
2010-2011 – Montana – Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
2004-2009 – Idaho – Quarterbacks
2002-2003 – Oregon State – Graduate Assistant

WELCOME RALLY: Oregon State will host a “Welcome Rally” that is open to the public Thursday night at 7 p.m. in the Club Level of Reser Stadium.

What They Are Saying

“The one thing that gives me the most confidence is that since the first time I met Jonathan, that’s all he’s ever wanted to do; coach the game. Obviously, he’s an intelligent man; he could have done anything with his life. He didn’t even pursue his own athletic career because that’s what he knew from the start he wanted to do. I’m very excited to have a man with that kind of focus coming back to lead your program. This is something he has been preparing for, for a very long time. I’m excited to see him move up the ranks and get this opportunity.”  OSU record-setting running back Ken Simonton

“This is a tremendous move by Oregon State, not only for the players who are going to play for him, but also for the community. He’s a true Beaver. He has moved up the coaching ranks and really deserves this opportunity. You know it’s a win-win and I’m so excited for Jonathan.”  Former Oregon State and NCAA champion head football coach Dennis Erickson.

“I’m very excited what he can bring to the program. He’s a young guy who has been there and knows how to get it done, and has been successful at other schools. He’s become a great coach and I think he’ll be a great leader for our school.” NFL veteran and OSU record-setting quarterback Derek Anderson

“What makes me happy about this hire are two things. Number one, he’s a player who competed at Oregon State and who cares about the university. But on the flip side, he was a player at Oregon State when we were at an all-time high. He knows what it takes to get there because he was there, he did it, and he was a part of it.” NFL Veteran wide receiver and Fiesta Bowl champion T.J. Houshmandzadeh

“What has always stood out to me about Jonathan is his competitiveness and his love of football. He was a great player for Oregon State and obviously what he has done as a coach speaks for itself. He loves Oregon State and I think he’s a great fit for the Beavers.” Former OSU Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach and current Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst

‘I’m very happy for Coach Smith and his family.  Jonathan is an excellent football coach and an outstanding person, and I’m confident he will have a lot of success at Oregon State,” Washington head coach Chris Petersen

“An incredible hire for Oregon State and I’m very happy for Jonathan. When I joined the Oregon State staff I could tell right away that Jonathan Smith was going to be a head coach. A great leader; someone who thrives under pressure; an overall terrific field general.  He’s going to be a great head coach, it’s something he has always wanted to do, and Oregon State made a terrific choice.”  Former Oregon State assistant coach and current Los Angeles Rams’ receivers coach Eric Yarber

“First of all, I was one of the fortunate ones to see him play here, going from a walk-on to a superstar, leading our football program to one of the greatest years in the history of our team. Jonathan will be an absolute rock star as a head football coach. He will give us the energy, the excitement, the competitiveness, all those things. If I had to say one thing about him, is that he is  a competitor. Everything I’ve witnessed him do, first as a student-athlete here, and then during his coaching career, is not surprising because I know what kind of competitor he is. Not to mention the fact he is a first-class human being, and a quality family man. When I talked to him, one thing he said to me is how important the community would be to him and his family.” Oregon State baseball head coach Pat Casey

“This is an exciting time for Beaver Nation having one of its own come back to lead our football program moving forward. I spent a couple of years with Jonathan at the University of Montana and found him to be a class act, a hard worker and a sharp football mind.” Oregon State basketball head coach Wayne Tinkle

Jonathan Smith has the qualities needed at Oregon State

Jonathan Smith has the qualities needed at Oregon State

Somebody asked me the other day what qualities I thought the new Oregon State football coach needed to be successful.

After thinking a few seconds, a few traits came to mind: toughness, intelligence and personality.

You have to be tough to coach there, because so many things are working against you. There is that unfinished stadium, a low budget, low attendance, poor recent record and inconsistent recruiting that has led to a severe talent shortage, to name just a few of the road blocks. This is college football's version of "Mission Impossible."

It's a position where you are going to have to fight your way through troublesome situations. You better be smart, too. You're going to have to beat people with better talent than you have -- trick them, if you can -- and figure out a way to improve your talent on that low budget. And you better have some personality and be able to schmooze the people with money. You're going to need them to write some big checks.

Johnathan Smith, come on down!

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I remember covering some of Smith's games as a walk-on quarterback of the Beavers from 1998-2001. Undersized, he took a terrible beating on a lot of days. But he got up every time and just kept at it. In 2000 he was at the controls of the juggernaut that clobbered Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl and finished the season 11-1. And I remember talking to him after some of the beatings he took during his career and he was always cool, calm and in control. He never flinched.

On the football field, this was one tough customer.

Can Smith return the Beaver program to what it was in 2000? I have no idea. When you give an assistant coach his first head coaching job, you're always taking a chance. But in this case, I love the hire. Smith knows Corvallis and the northwest. He knows what he's up against and I'm sure is well aware of how difficult it's going to be to get that program cranked up again.

He's going to need a great coaching staff and I hope his university supplies him with the money to go get it. And he's going to need time and patience. The Beavers won one game last season, a narrow win over Portland State, which went winless in the Big Sky Conference. If you're going to expect a miracle turnaround, you're not realistic.

But over the long haul, I'm partial to the tough guys. I'd bet on Johnathan Smith.

Sources indicate Oregon State will hire Jonathan Smith as head coach

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Sources indicate Oregon State will hire Jonathan Smith as head coach

Oregon State has found it's new head football coach. 

Sources confirm OSU will hire Jonathan Smith as head coach, as first reported by the Oregonian. 

Smith is Washington's co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Some background on Smith; He played quarterback at OSU from 1998-2001, was an OSU graduate assistant from 2002-03, coached the quarterback position at Idaho, Montana and Boise State. 

Beavers fans will remember Smith leading OSU during the 2000 season culminating with a Fiesta Bowl victory over Notre Dame and an 11-1 record. 

More to come as the story develops. 

Some wishes for the state's college football programs

Some wishes for the state's college football programs

Now that the regular-season is over, it's time for a few holiday wishes for this state's football programs:

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  • For Oregon State: Hire a coach as soon as possible but not too soon. You need to be as sure as you can about this one because the program cannot take much more of the kind of failure it experienced this season. It takes a lot of money to feed the machine that is big-time college football and I'm not sure how the Beavers are continuing to get contributions from boosters and sell season tickets with the kind of mess they put on display in that woeful campaign. Ideally, the new hire would be someone who would be able to generate excitement among Beaver Nation before he ever plays a game. As we all know, once the games start, that excitement can dissipate in a hurry.
  • For Oregon: Keep those assistant coaches! The Ducks have assembled a quality staff and the problem with that is that other schools are always going to be coming after their coaches. The Ducks must be on high alert in that regard and protect their family. I'd also say they need to keep an eye on all those blue-chip recruits they have commitments from. A lot can happen between now and the signing date and a lot of those SEC schools still haven't gotten as serious with recruiting as they'll get now. But if Oregon brings that whole staff back and signs all the prospects who have committed, next season is going to be a big one.
  • For Portland State: Keep the program alive. Honestly, with small crowds and no wins, I'm not sure how committed the PSU administration is going to be about football. Something dramatic has to happen there and I'm not sure what it's going to be. In a metropolitan area this size, it's hard for me to believe the school can't get enough people to care about its program to fund it on a higher level. But on the other hand, who wants to be associated with winless seasons?

It could be a very long time before Oregon loses another Civil War

It could be a very long time before Oregon loses another Civil War

EUGENE - Remember this date: Nov. 26, 2016. 

That was the last time Oregon State won a Civil War game. It wasn't that long ago. Only a year. But that date could have legs. 

Oregon whipped OSU 69-10 tonight in the 121st Civil War at Autzen Stadium. The score very much reflected the disparity between the two programs. So much so that UO coach Willie Taggart dropped some smack talk afterwards by saying that the Ducks, who led 52-7 at halftime, wore raincoats at the end of this game because "it was raining touchdowns."

Taggart was making a reference to statements made during the week by OSU interim coach Cory Hall, who recalled the second half of OSU's victory last year when the rain came and Oregon's players began putting on raincoats while the Beavers welcomed the elements. Hall said he knew then that the Beavers would win. And they did, 34-24, snapping an eight-game losing streak in the 121-game series. It might be a long time before OSU defeats UO again.

The trajectory of the two programs couldn't be anymore contrasting. Oregon has a young, rising star coach in Taggart, who happens to be a recruiting dynamo. Oregon State saw its so-called savior coach, Gary Andersen, quit mid-season and is now scrambling to find its next leader. 

The Ducks (7-5, 4-5 Pac-12) rebounded quickly from a 4-8 season a year ago that ended with the loss in Corvallis. The Beavers (1-11, 0-9), whose fans stormed the field following the upset victory, believed that  their fortunes were about to change. Instead, the program regressed in Andersen's third year. OSU last won just one game in 1995 (1-10).

Oregon has a potentially limitless ceiling. The Ducks' 2018 recruiting class ranks No. 1 on Scout.come and No. 6 on both Rivals.com and 247Sports.com.  OSU's class ranks 79th on Rivals.  A new coach could change that but he won't be able to get the Beavers into the top 30, let alone top 10.  The talent disparity between the two programs that was on display tonight will continue to grow. 

Oregon gained 577 yards compared to 211 for Oregon State. 

Of course, strange things could happen.  Maybe a new OSU coach will hit big on an elite quarterback while Oregon is left scrambling after Justin Herbert, four touchdown passes tonight, moves on to the NFL in the next couple of years. Maybe Taggart bolts for another program soon and a new coach falters in recruiting, setting the table for Oregon State to pounce. 

Anything could happen. But after Saturday night's beatdown - the largest margin of victory in this series - it's difficult to walk away not believing that at least another eight-game Civil War winning streak for the Ducks has already begun. 

 

Ducks need Civil War victory more than Oregon State

Ducks need Civil War victory more than Oregon State

The Oregon Ducks should win today's Civil War with great ease. They own virtually every matchup over Oregon State. 

However, these games rarely play out based on matchups and probability. So, the 25-point underdog Beavers do have a puncher's chance of pulling off an upset, or at the very least, making the game close. 

However the 121st Civil War plays out today at Autzen Stadium (4 p.m. on ESPN2), the Ducks (6-5, 3-5 Pac-12) must win. They cannot afford to blow this. The Ducks need this win even more than the Beavers do. 

Oregon is building toward something strong next season under coach Willie Taggart. Finishing off the year at 8-5 with a win today and then a bowl victory after losing sophomore quarterback Justin Herbert for five games (1-4 during that stretch) would provide a strong catapult into next year with 14 starters returning. 

Plus, on a weekend when it has been announced that former UO coach Chip Kelly has become the new coach at UCLA, Ducks nation might not be able to also endure a humiliating Civil War defeat. 

Oregon State (1-10, 0-8) could use the win, as well. Nothing could sooth such a disastrous season like upsetting the Ducks. But, OSU accomplished that last season at home by winning 34-24 to snap an eight-game Civil War losing streak only to blow that mojo with a follow-up season with only one win coming against 0-11 Portland State. 

The Beavers reportedly already have a new direction in place and will hire Cal offensive coordinator and former Eastern Washington head coach Beau Baldwin to run the program. Hiring the quarterback guru is a great move for OSU. So, even if the Beavers get blasted today they will have something to celebrate very soon when Baldwin takes over for interim coach Cory Hall. 

What needs to happen today for Oregon is that it makes easy work of the Beavers. End it early. Get in about 10 Swag Surfin' moments. Play a lot of guys. Have fun with no trepidation. 

The UO players have been reminded of last year's Civil War loss in almost torturous fashion. Taggart has had the "low-lights," as he calls them, played over and over for his team to view and remind them of how bad things got last season. 

A dominant win today could remind the Ducks of how good things could be in the future. 

---

Oregon vs. Oregon State

When: 4 p.m., Saturday, Autzen Stadium, Eugene.  

T.V.: ESPN2. 

Betting line: Oregon by 25.

Records: Ducks (6-5, 3-5 Pac-12), Oregon State (1-10, 0-8).

Last week: Oregon took down Arizona (7-4, 5-3), 48-28. OSU lost 40-24 at home to Arizona State (6-5, 5-3) 

Coaches: Ducks' Willie Taggart (46-50, 6-5 at Oregon); Oregon State's Cory Hall (0-5).

Fear factor (five-point scale): 0. Oregon has the advantage in just about every imaginable facet of the game. A loss would be disastrous for Oregon and put a major damper on an otherwise promising season. 

The Beavers won last year behind a punishing running game led by Ryan Nall that no longer exists. However, one must consider the fact that OSU took Stanford to the wire in a 15-14 loss while the Cardinal destroyed Oregon, 49-7. Then again, Stanford played OSU without running back Bryce Love and Oregon played Stanford without Herbert, so scratch all of that nonsense. 

Today's game is all Oregon. 

Game prediction: Oregon 57, Oregon State 27.  

Beavers learn firsthand just how good Khalil Tate is

Beavers learn firsthand just how good Khalil Tate is

Khalil Tate is good. The whole country knows it. On Saturday the Beavers learned the lesson firsthand. Tate ran all the Beavers to the tune of 206 -yards and two scores. But it wasn’t just Tate that had his way. The entire Arizona run game was in attack mode. The Wildcats ran for 534-yards and seven touchdowns. Seven! In short, Oregon State just couldn’t stop the ground attack.

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FINAL SCORE: Arizona 49 – Oregon State 28.

Now the Beavers turn their attention to Arizona State. With two games left on the schedule (the Sun Devils and the Ducks) can Oregon State get its first conference victory?