#16 Oregon State takes on California in a 7:30 kick on the Pac-12 Networks. OSU is clinging to very slight odds to still make a BCS Bowl. The much easier part of that plan involves starting with a win over the Bears. Even though Tedford is in a desperate situation, I don’t think this OSU team will shrink in the 4th quarter in Reser this Saturday. Riley makes a living beating teams he is supposed to beat and a few minor upsets here and there. He knows how to get plenty of wins as long as the impact isn’t all that substantial. As soon as it could mean something truely nationally and program impactful in the grand scheme of things, he never seems to be able to pull off the needed win to do something great. I’m still in shock over how little running OSU did in the 4th quarter against Stanford when balance then would very likely have won us the Rose Bowl.
In recruiting news, OSU seems to be on the cusp of some good signings. Top JUCO DT from L.A. Pierce, Marquel Combs (6-3, 310) named his top seven schools and Oregon State was among them and is thought to be in his top few. This 4 Star athlete would be a great get to go with next year’s rebranding and have Beaver Nation believing next year’s and future defenses will be as good and probably even better than this year’s team. Bowl wise, OSU probably is in line for the Holiday Bowl most likely, with the Alamo possible and the Rose or another BCS Bowl requiring just about everything to go right. The Holiday Bowl gave a long spiel about how they were really excited about the prospect of an opportunity to land OSU before the Stanford game. Well, they weren’t talking about if we won that game, because we would have been in the Rose Bowl, so as Ron Burgandy would say, “Stay Classy San Diego.” Beaver Nation has been itching for atleast the Holiday Bowl and would travel well for such an appearance. That matchup could potentially see us take on Texas Tech. If that game happens it will undoubtedly be of interest to Steven Nelson, because the 6-0 cornerback and Georgia decommit looks like he will choose between Oregon State and Texas Tech now.
A good bowl win that is atleast the Holiday Bowl, will make this a bittersweet but still satisfying season so long as BDC does something to try to build off the momentum of a good season. His best opportunity is with the Spring revealing of the rebranding. After watching OSU lose to Alabama in Madison Square Garden, it is easy to recognize that OSU does not have the rock solid confidence of elite teams. This is where more powerful and bold branding can help our programs. We need to change our image as un underdog and rebuild it as an alpha program. Strength, power and confidence need to be a part of that image. To me that means a look that is innovative, modern and excites today’s recruits. Give them plenty of sweet combinations, with a strong and winner’s attitude theme. We need to quit being the regional quirky feel good team and start being a legitimate year in and year out contender that expects to be ranked in the Top 25 every year, and all year. In basketball, this rebranding has to help land us several more big recruits who will take OSU back to the NCAA tournament and build the program so that we are both a major football and basketball school.
The final piece that BDC can help with to grab the momentum and excitement in Beaver Nation and channel into into a very successful future is to announce by late this next summer that Reser Phase 3 plans have been finalized and official fundraising will commence with plans to have it built and finished in under 3 years. Only with the culmination of a bolder attitude, imagery, and more rabid fanbase of near 50K at games is OSU likely to have the breakthrough we have all been waiting so long for that gets us into the Rose Bowl. When you are this close, you want to unite and push through any way possible through determination and big goals. I believe more and more that once Reser Phase 3 is built Beaver Nation will finally be realized as it is supposed to be. Our stadium will be a gem and combined with our growing fanbase and winning branding Oregon State will be much more able to sell itself nationally as a destination program. I hope BDC realizes that OSU has the qualities of a sleeping giant forming and take the steps necessary to unleash it as deserved to the rest of the world. In this day and age, if you expect to be great, then you must act the part.
Oregon State 30, Cal 17