The Oregon State Beavers are still dancing in March.
The Beavers men’s basketball team will make their first Sweet 16 appearance since 1982 on Saturday as No. 12-seeded Oregon State takes on No. 8-seeded Loyola Chicago.
Head coach Wayne Tinkle has already talked about how much this matchup means to him, as his father was the former vice president dean of students at Loyola-Chicago in the 70s.
But as Tinkle told his daughter, Joslyn Tinkle, host of the Talkin’ Beavers podcast, it’s really special to have Beaver Nation cheering them on after a year of what-ifs due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“That makes us feel great,” Wayne Tinkle said of the love from the Oregon State community. “Just the outpouring of support, so many emails and texts through what has been such an incredibly tough year. Bringing relief, joy, therapy has been thrown out there, makes us feel so good. It’s just so rewarding for what we’ve been through, the efforts we’ve put forth for us to have the success...
While Loyola-Chicago has gained national attention for 101-year-old nun, Sister Jean, who has been the team’s good luck charm, Tinkle says he’s got a few sisters motivating his players through prayers too.
“With Loyola coming up, you’ve got Sister Jean," Tinkle explained. "Well, I just did a radio show in Chicago and talked about my seven sisters, and the strength that they’re giving us. Plus, we got Mother Fefe back in Corvallis… We’ve got a lot of people praying for us. That’s going to be a hell of a matchup on Saturday, but it’s just great, great to feel all the love from Beaver Nation.”
Hear more from Beavers head coach Wayne Tinkle as he talks about his team’s preparations heading into Saturday’s game, the Pac-12 deserving more respect, and the success of the Oregon State women’s basketball team on the full Talkin’ Beavers podcast.