Oregon St. vs. Stanford


Oregon St. is 2-6 heading into the ABC televised game against Stanford.  Come Saturday by 4PM that record will be 2-7.  Bet the farm on this one.  No pun intended.  Riley and his coordinators look like they are sleepwalking out there.  Has anything changed in the schemes for the last 5 years?  Not much, and opposing coaches are frequently licking their chops at the thought of playing a team so easy to outcoach.

Canzano finally came out of the apologist camp this week and stated Riley needed to make serious changes to staff and schemes in the offseason if he wanted to avoid the hot seat.  Problem is everything we know about Riley and De Carolis is that they are more resistant to change than just about anyone.  They like being dinosaurs in a brave new college football landscape even if recruits don’t agree so much.   As a fan I believe I have reasonable expectations.  My main expectations are for the team and coach to pass the eye test and look like they are giving it all for a full 4 quarters and 60 minutes.  That has only been the case against WSU this year as Arizona we had some dull moments and effort mixed in but benefited from costly turnovers.   I was at the USC game last year when we clobbered USC.  There was energy in the air just like in 2008 but against Stanford at 12:30 PM won’t be one of those games.

To me the players have largely given up once it looks like we won’t be making a bowl.  The fans are left to have similar attitudes.  The now “great” scenario of a 6-6 season that has become Riley’s shining city on a hill, appears much less appetizing to a fan when that warrants an automatic extension and a seeming guarantee Riley will be around in the 2020s.  Very few fans are excited by that prospect for mediocrity or worse.  Thus why we have seen 5-7 and now perhaps 2-10 this year.  What other options do we have besides letting the wheels come off and forcing change?  Not many if Riley gets to treat 6-6 as a miracle season worthy of promotion.

I see this game being Stanford 24, OSU 7 at halftime and ending 45-14.  Oregon State won’t really be in it after the first Stanford TD drive and our own stalled drive.  To have any chance we do need to have a +2 turnover margin and score TDs.  Trying more than one field goal or at most 2 will spell doom because we won’t beat Stanford without scoring atleast 35 points.  I know this because our defense is not capable of holding them to under 35 in my opinion.  Stanford will run a balanced attack all day and Luck will carve up the Beaver defense.  Riley will keep the scouting easy for Stanford by running “the same base stuff” they have run all year.   To have any hope of keeping it close Rodgers, Halahuni, Wheaton and Cummings all have to step up and play physical and with an attitude that they have the win on their mind from the opening kickoff.  I am hoping Crichton and Wynn can get to Luck some and if they do I hope our players will clobber him.  Our best chance is to knock him out of the game.  Sometimes you need a leader or two on defense ready to go in there and lay a couple bigtime hits like we did with Tuel in the WSU game.

But much more likely and what will happen is that Luck will have an easy day and Mannion will be playing catchup.  Even though we know we lose everytime when we rush for less than 100 yards, Langsdorf will get pass happy yet again.  False starts by Remmers won’t help and we will be seeing a couple 3rd and 15 or longer plays which will be ripe for Mannion interceptions.  I believe he will be picked 2 times and maybe even 3 in this game as we become so obviously one-dimensional and using Langsdorf play calling.   Instead we have to get Agnew going and just tell him to not take too many chances strectching the ball out.  Just hold it tight and grind out a solid running game.

Nothing in this game will go too swell for the Beavers though.  It’s pretty bad when Ted Miller on ESPN would have Riley be Sheriff Andy for Halloween.  This isn’t Mayberry and we don’t need Andy or Opie folks.  We need a confident coach who is confident in himself and his team, recruits well because of that confidence and will to win, and motivates his players to be winners on the field every week.  We are getting none of those things right now under Riley and his coordinators archaic, refuse to adapt style.  Welcome back to the Dark Ages until we shake up most of what is OSU Football.  Be progressive and not stale as a program would be my advice.  Do something and change the branding to be seen as exciting and fresh and not old and tired.

Stanford 45, OSU 14