I cannot say enough about the coaching job Jonathan Smith and his staff have done at Oregon State this season.
Gary Andersen left scorched earth when he pulled up stakes and headed south out of Corvallis two seasons ago. And already, Smith is growing a promising crop of players within a system that has kept his team in just about every game this season.
The Beavers have been competitive within the North Division of the Pac=12. And it’s been a while.
And making that climb from hopeless to hopeful is a long and arduous journey that Smith has accomplished a lot quicker than anybody had a real right to expect.
But what about the rest of this season? Oregon State is just one win away from being bowl eligible. Can it happen?
Obviously, it’s possible. After watching this bunch win conference road games, it’s easy to give them a fighting chance at a couple of games in which they will be underdogs. Next week, in Pullman against Washington State, I think OSU can pull it off if all goes well. And there’s always a chance when your team has a veteran quarterback and an offense that doesn’t turn the ball over frequently – which has been a hallmark of this season’s team.
The final game of the season will be in Eugene against the Ducks. And I’ve seen enough Civil War games to know that even though anything can happen, the favorite usually wins. And the Ducks will likely have so much at stake they should be at their very best.
But, come on! Would we have ever guessed we would see this much out of Oregon State this season? No way.
So, it probably wouldn’t be wise to totally count them out now.