Something's gotta give this women's Civil War showdown

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NBCSNW

Something's gotta give this women's Civil War showdown

There are 12,364 seats in Matthew Knight Arena. On Friday, there will be two top-10 teams on display and on that tree-painted court. And if you’re a nervous eater, there is lots of popcorn to be sold. 

The first chapter of the 2019 women’s Civil War tips off at 6 PM (PT) in Eugene, Oregon, and it’s going to be a good one. 

On Monday, there were 10,000 tickets sold. On Tuesday, 2,000 more. On Wednesday, all 12,364 seats were sold out. 

Records: No. 3 Oregon (23-1, 12-0 Pac-12) vs. No. 9 Oregon State (20-4, 10-2 Pac-12).

Last meeting(s): The Civil War was split last season with the home team getting the victory. Oregon State defeated Oregon 85-79 in overtime in Corvallis, Oregon. Just two days later, the Ducks beat the Beavers 75-63 in Eugene, Oregon. 

Ducks to watch:

Literally how can you not start off this section without first bringing up Sabrina Ionescu. The junior, triple-double queen, Nancy Lieberman award top-10 finalist, potential No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 WNBA Draft, we could go on… Ionescu is averaging 19.3 points per game and 7.3 rebounds per game.  

Sophomore Satou Sabally, the reigning Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, is currently having the best stretch of her career starting with a career-high 33 points against Washington State on Jan. 25th. Sabally is Oregon’s leading scorer at 20.0 points per game to go along with 6.0 rebounds per game.

Down low is Ruthy Hebard’s paint on both sides of the court. The junior is averaging a near double-double with 16.6 points per game and 9.0 rebounds per game.  

And then if you can manage to slow down those three, you still have to contain Erin Boley, who is shooting lights out from three-point range at .452% and then the quarterback of the Ducks in guard Maite Cazorla, with a calm and cool 10.3 points per game. 

Five starters, five scorers in double figures. 

But probably the most intriguing statistic is that the Ducks are also leading the nation with the least amount of turnovers per game (10.5). So not only is Oregon really good at putting the ball through the net, but also doing it in the most efficient way possible with the fewest turnovers, making the most of their offensive possessions. 

In the last three games, the Ducks have outscored their opponents 295-173. The offense is working. The defense is working. And the Ducks are rolling. 

Against the three top-25 conference opponents this season, Oregon has not faltered either: 77-71 vs. then No. 19 Arizona State; 87-65 vs. then No. 14 Utah; and dismantling then No. 11 Stanford 88-48 on the road.

Beavers to watch:

Oregon State has a destiny, and not just a path to a national championship… her name is Destiny Slocum. In her first year with the Beavers (transferred from Maryland and sat out one year), the redshirt sophomore Slocum is a freight train averaging 16.3 points per game while dishing out 5.0 assists per game. 

If Slocum doesn’t have you worried, her counterpart Mikayla Pivec will do the trick. The junior has experience on experience starting 27 games as a freshman and every game since. She is averaging 15.3 points per game in Pac-12 play but also is leading the Beavers with 8.9 rebounds per game, from the guard spot! She can rebound, score points, but also her defense is what makes her even more dangerous with 25 steals so far this season. 

Down low, you’ve got Taya Corosdale as well as 6’8” Joanna Grymek to deal with. While Grymek is only scoring 6.6 points per game, her sheer height down low causes the opponent to rethink driving the ball. She has 21 blocks on the season. Corosdale is the second leading rebounder for the Beavers (7.5). 

Shoot your shot:

Three-point percentage. Both Oregon and Oregon State are No. 1 and No. 2 in the nation for three-point field goal percentage: Oregon (42.9%) and Oregon State (42.1). The Beavers have held opponents to 26.6 percent shooting from 3-point range over their last 14 games.

How and where to watch:

Time: Friday, Feb. 15, 6 PM (PT)

Where: Matthew Knight Arena, Eugene, Oregon

TV: Pac-12 Network

 

A disappointing season in 2018 has Oregon State's defense fired up and hungry

A disappointing season in 2018 has Oregon State's defense fired up and hungry

Forget the offense, the defense is all you need to remember from Oregon State’s football scrimmage on Saturday night.

In front of nearly 500 fans at Reser Stadium, the defense made a statement, recording five three-and-outs in the first six drives of the day for a total of eight three-and-outs on the night.

“They had one touchdown on probably what, 10 drives? It’s a win,” linebacker Avery Roberts said. 

But that wasn’t the whole story—the Beavs d-line also had strong pushes up front, they were physical at the line of attack and there was a level of accountability Oregon State players failed to show before.

So, what's changed in Oregon State’s defense in a matter of months? For insider linebacker Shemar Smith, the answer is striking.

“We have angrier guys, hungrier guys who can make plays in the backfield,” Smith said. "Basically we’re getting a push up front. We have more pieces to the puzzle."

Roberts echoed Smith’s sentiments.

“Honestly, I think guys genuinely care more,” Roberts said. “That’s really what it comes down to. Guys are really trying much harder, not even on the field, but after trying to get better.”

While it seemed like Oregon State’s defense had won the day, coach Jonathan Smith wasn’t quite sold on the idea.

“Yeah we’re pleased with a lot of things they did,” Smith said. “There was some back and forth. I was pleased with their energy and the way they tackled.”

Oregon State’s defense is far from a finished product. The Beavers failed to hold a conference opponent to fewer than 500 yards last season, giving up an average of 45.7 points and 536.8 yards per game—129th in the nation.

Consistency will be key for the defense heading into the 2019 college football season. Their first real test? Oklahoma State on Aug. 30 in the season opener.

Oregon State's Brian Lindgren ready to deploy 'explosive' offense

Oregon State's Brian Lindgren ready to deploy 'explosive' offense

Oregon State offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Brian Lindgren expects big things from Beaver football this season. 

Lindgren, in his second year in Corvallis, had a lengthy checklist of things to figure out heading into 2019: Who would be the team's starting quarterback? How would he reconfigure an offensive line that lost three starters? What's the best way to utilize the Beavers skillful group of wide receivers and tight ends? 

In an interview with NBC Sports Northwest, Lindgren discussed the strides the team has made this offseason and why he's excited about the explosive group of players set to deploy when the season kicks off on Aug. 30. 

Oregon State Beavers have confidence in quarterback corps

Oregon State Beavers have confidence in quarterback corps

The Oregon State Beavers start their 2019 campaign in less than two weeks when they host the Oklahoma State Cowboys at Reser Stadium. Quarterback Jake Luton will be under center running the show for the Beavers that day, this is certain. What is not certain is what the Beavers have behind him on the depth chart. 

OSU has six quarterbacks on the roster, but they don't have a whole lot of experience: One true freshman, a true junior, three redshirt sophomores, and Luton. 

Of all those quarterbacks, perhaps none holds more intrigue than redshirt sophomore Tristan Gebbia. Gebbia started his career with the Nebraska Cornhuskers where he utilized his redshirt and did not play a single snap his freshman season. He then decided to leave the program. Due to NCAA transfer rules, Gebbia would have to sit out another season of football. 

He would eventually choose to continue his career at Oregon State. He was once again on the sideline, unable to play, but what he was doing was taking it all in a learning every second he could. 

Said offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Brian Lindgren: 

"He's a worker, man. He's always around the facility. Loves football. Loves talking football. Loves learning. And I just think all of the reps that he got through spring, over the summer when they were working on their own, and then coming through fall camp you've seen his growth."

He may not have played a single snap in college, but two seasons learning from coaches in the Power 5 should have Gebbia more than ready to step up if his number happens to be called. 

"I'm excited about Tristan. I think he's a really accurate passer. He does a nice job moving in the pocket," said Lindgren. "I wouldn't consider him super athletic or a guy that's going to be able to extend plays, but I think he extends plays in the pocket. When things break down he can move and keep himself alive and make some plays."

Luton may be the star, but Gebbia could be the quarterback in waiting. 
 

The secret is out Oregon State's dynamic backfield lead by the reigning Freshman All-American

The secret is out Oregon State's dynamic backfield lead by the reigning Freshman All-American

Oregon State football’s best kept secret lasted only one game last season, and his name is Jermar Jefferson.

The 5-foot-10, 214-pound freshman from Harbor City, California was a bright spot for the Beavers last season. Impressive is an understatement. Jefferson set the OSU true freshman rushing record with 1,380 yards and averaged 5.8 yards per carry on 239 total carries. He lead all freshman nationally and was ninth overall regardless of class.

The secret is out on Jefferson. He finished his freshman year as the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and named a Freshman All-American by The Athletic, ESPN, and USA Today among others. 

In the video above, Beavers offensive coordinator Brian Lindgren says on Jefferson: “Jermar Jefferson had a great season last year… he’s a special player. He has really good vision, the ability to make people miss and make a cut and get vertical. It’s no longer a secret.”

The one-two punch starts with Jefferson and ends with Artavis Pierce.

The 5-foot-11, 209-pound senior rushed for 173 yards in last season’s opener at Ohio State. Yes, he is the backup to Jefferson, but also Pierce or rather “AP Juice” on his Twitter bio, does just that: brings the juice. He is a reliable back, can jump outside at light speed, and burst through a seem. 

“Artavis [Pierce] changes it up and I think to be able to have one of those guys that’s always in there that’s fresh and the defense is having to tackle different running styles,” says Lindgren.

The return of the Jefferson-Pierce duo; an improved offensive line; the return of quarterback Jake Luton… expect a big jump from the Beavers offense this upcoming season.

Isaiah Hodgins, Trevon Bradford lead a young, talented Oregon State receiving corp

Isaiah Hodgins, Trevon Bradford lead a young, talented Oregon State receiving corp

We are just 15 days away from the start of the 2019-2020 Oregon State football season.

In the video above, we got to sit down with Oregon State offensive coordinator Brian Lindgren and chat about the upcoming season ahead, specifically about the dynamic wide receivers group. 

“I feel like those guys are as detailed with their route running and the technique that they play with,” says Lindgren.

And it all starts with Trevon Bradford and Isaiah Hodgins.

A 6-foot-0, 182-pound senior from Oregon City, OR, Bradford has played in 30 games for the Beavers for 913 total yards. He has been the steady hand on the outside for the Beavers since stepping onto the field back in 2016 as a freshman. His numbers continue to increase with each year.

Beside him stands 6-foot-4, 209-pound Isaiah Hodgins. The junior from Oakley, CA has made “SportsCenter Top10-esk” catches time and time again. He enters this upcoming season with 90 receptions for 1,151 yards and seven touchdowns through 22 games. 

And then you have the underclassmen who have big roles to fill this season. Keep an eye on Tyjon Lindsey, Jesiah Irish, and Champ Flemings.

One more year with quarterback Jake Luton. Year two under head coach Jonathan Smith. An urgency mentality. 

The Beavers open up the 2019 season in just 15 days.

REPORT: Oregon State football lands 3-star ATH Isaiah Newell

REPORT: Oregon State football lands 3-star ATH Isaiah Newell

The Oregon State Beavers just got Dam more explosive in the backfield. 3-star ATH Isaiah Newell from Walnut Creek, California commits to Jonathan Smith and the Beavers as apart of the 2020 class.

The 6-foot-3, 215-pound big bodied Newell chose Oregon State over offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, Oregon, USC and Utah among others. 

During his junior season at Las Lomas High School, Newell rushed for 2,166 yards and 32 touchdowns. 

How he will fit in Smith’s system:

Running back, slot receiver, you name it… Newell is can do it. He’s got the size to run between the tackles, not get jammed at the line by an opposing linebacker, but also the quickness and versatility to explode out of the backfield. As a running back, he will be behind Jermar Jefferson, the reigning Pac-12 Offensive Freshman of the Year and Freshman All-American, but as he said in an interview, “Iron sharpens iron.”

The Bridge Podcast: Derek Anderson - Former Oregon State Beavers QB

The Bridge Podcast: Derek Anderson - Former Oregon State Beavers QB

The Bridge host Justin Myers sits down with Derek Anderson former Oregon State QB, and Arch-nemesis to Justin. Derek dives into his high school years in Scappoose, and what went into his decision to go to Oregon State University. Also, they talk about the Golden Era of the Civil War rivalry, what it was like being drafted in the NFL and what it was like being a backup quarterback in the NFL. If you are a fan of Oregon State Football, or are interested in the NFL this is a must listen for you.




PAC-12 schedule announced for Oregon State women’s basketball

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USA Today

PAC-12 schedule announced for Oregon State women’s basketball

The PAC-12 has released their conference slate for the upcoming women’s basketball season during 2019-20. The dates of games are tentative due to broadcast times as it pertains to the PAC-12 network and national affiliates. 

The conference schedule opens at home on January 3, 2020, against either Utah or Colorado. Oregon State will continue their PAC-12 play in Corvallis with five of their first seven games at Gill Coliseum. The Beavers will play every conference team twice other than Washington and Washington State (only play at home) and USC and UCLA (only on the road). 

The most anticipated games of the year, against the Oregon Ducks, are currently projected to happen on January 24 in Corvallis and January 26 in Eugene. 

The Beavers look to continue their recent success. Last season, Oregon State finished the year 26-8 and advanced to their fourth straight Sweet 16. With four returning starters, the Beavers hope to take the next step by winning the coveted NCAA title

Joey Wong joins Mitch Canham's coaching staff at OSU

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USA Today

Joey Wong joins Mitch Canham's coaching staff at OSU

Back in 2007, Mitch Canham was a star catcher for the Beavers and across the diamond manning the middle of the infield was a young freshman by the name of Joey Wong. Together the two helped lead Oregon State to its second consecutive national title. 

Flash forward 12 years and the two are once again in the Beaver dugout together. 

It was announced Tuesday that Wong would be returning to Corvallis as an undergraduate assistant on new head coach Mitch Canham's staff.  

"The Beaver family is excited to have Joey Wong come in as an undergrad," Canham said in a press release from the school. "He will be working with the infielders as he is one of the most elite infielders to ever put on the Beaver uniform. Joey has had a phenomenal professional career and his communication skills and love for the game are unparalleled."
 
Wong was quoted in that same press release as saying, "my family and I are beyond excited to be coming back to Corvallis and joining this amazing group of players and staff... We're very grateful to Mitch and the rest of the staff for giving us this opportunity. It's a dream come true and we can't wait to get started. Go Beavs!"
 
Wong, a Salem native, played in 175 games for the Beavers, batting .262 with six home runs and 80 RBI. However, he may be most well-known for turning one of the best double plays in College World Series history.