THIS WEEK Oregon State ventures on the road for the first time this season, traveling to Madison to play the No. 8 (AP)/No. 9 (USA Today) Wisconsin Badgers (1-0). Kickoff for the ESPN televised game is approximately 9 a.m. PDT.
THE SERIES This is only the second meeting between the two schools in football. Wisconsin won the previous meeting 23-20 in 1961 in Madison. The Badgers complete the two-game series by traveling to Corvallis, Sept. 8, 2012. The Beavers have another Big Ten opponent on the schedule in the coming years, starting in 2017 with a two-game series with Minnesota.
HERE WE GO AGAIN Never shy Mike Riley about playing a tough schedule has put together another challenging one in 2011, facing currently ranked No. 8 (AP)/No. 9 (USA Today) Wisconsin and a BYU team that is among the top vote recipients outside the top 25 - for non conference foes. In conference the Beavers have No. 6 Stanford, No. 13 Oregon, Arizona State (ARV), Utah (ARV), and Arizona (ARV).
OLD FRIENDS Back in 1991 head coach Mike Riley and his running backs/tight end coach Paul Chryst, who is now the offensive coordinator at Wisconsin, used to draw up plays and formations on planes, bus rides, etc. - with the San Antonio Riders of the World League of American Football. A side note about the Riders current Dallas Cowboys' coach Jason Garrett was the quarterback and the late Tom Landry of Dallas Cowboys' fame was the general manager. Chryst joined Riley in Corvallis for Riley's initial stint in 1997 and '98 as the offensive coordinator and then again in 2003 and 2004. The duo in '03 and '04 led OSU to Las Vegas Bowl and Insight Bowl victories. They coached current NFL standouts quarterback Derek Anderson (school record holder for passing) and running back Steven Jackson (All-American), and 2005 Biletnikoff Award recipient wide receiver Mike Hass. Chryst also was on Riley's San Diego Chargers' coaching staff (1999-2001). The two remain close friends. In addition, Wisconsin wide receivers coach DelVaughn Alexander held the same position at OSU in 2003 and '04.
NINTH IN A ROW Head coach Mike Riley is in his 11th year overall as the head coach of the Beavers, and his ninth consecutive. The consecutive streak is the longest for an OSU coach since Dee Andros led the program for 11 straight seasons between 1965-75. Riley is the second-winningest coach in OSU history with 69 victories, five short of Lon Stiner (1933-48). He also has the second-most victories by any active Pac-12 Conference coach (at one school), trailing only Cal's Jeff Tedford (73 wins). For more on Riley check out the full bio on page 4 of this release or at osubeavers.com.
"I DON'T REMEMBER MADISON" Beaver junior wide receiver Geno Munoz doesn't remember his days in Madison, but he was born there and was a resident until the age of two. His brother, Michael, is a recent graduate of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.
FAMILY REUNION Defensive tackle Kevin Frahm is probable as of press time for this Saturday's game after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery last month. Whatever his availability, the trip to Madison will be a family reunion of sorts. Kevin's father, Ken, grew up on a dairy farm in Athens, near Stevens Point, and most of Ken's family still lives in the area (Marathon and Taylor counties). Ken, an anesthesiologist in Portland, was the first of the Frahm family to graduate from college - The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.
FAMILY REUNION II Oregon State Director of Athletics Bob De Carolis was recently in Madison moving one of his three daughters into a dormitory. Lauren is a freshman (true freshman that is; she will not redshirt) studying liberal arts. Lauren's twin sister Hayley is a freshman (true) at Cal Poly-SLO, while their older sister Lyndsay is a 2011 graduate of the University of Michigan.
STILL HAVE THAT SCOUTING REPORT? The Beaver coaching staff should be able to learn something first-hand about the Wisconsin Badgers from first-year OSU assistant coach Brent Brennan. The wide receivers' coach spent 2005-10 at San Jose State and last year the Spartans traveled to Madison, losing 27-14. Brennan also was a member of the UCLA team that lost to Wisconsin in the 1994 Rose Bowl (21-16).
BIG VENUE Oregon State has made a habit in recent years of playing in big college stadiums. Saturday the Beavers will play in front of the 14th-largest crowd in the program's history at Camp Randall Stadium (80,321). Recent travels for OSU have taken the team to Penn State (2008/108,159/largest stadium in college football), LSU (2004/91,828), USC (2007/85,213) and UCLA (2008/83,478).
STARTERS OUT As of press time OSU will likely be short at least four starters for the season opener. Receiver James Rodgers (knee), H-Back Joe Halahuni (shoulder), cornerback Brandon Hardin (shoulder) and defensive lineman Dominic Glover (academics). These four players alone account for 62 starts. In addition, defensive tackle Kevin Frahm (knee), who has started 11 games in his career, is hopeful to return this week at Wisconsin.
FROSH STARTERS A pair of true freshmen - Malcolm Agnew (RB) and Brandin Cooks (WR) - started the season opener becoming the first true freshmen to start since offensive tackle Michael Philipp opened the 2009 season at left tackle. Receiver Markus Wheaton also started one game in 2009 as a true freshman. Research has not found a true freshman running back or receiver to start the season opener in the modern history of OSU football.
OFFENSIVE LINE EXPERIENCE Oregon State entered the season with a combined 91 starts on the offensive line, tied for the 10th-most in nation with Boise State, according to a study conducted by Zach Fisher of Utah State. SMU leads the nation with 158 and BYU, a 2011 opponent, is fourth with 106.
WIN THE TURNOVER BATTLE, WIN THE GAME Over the last 88 games, Oregon State is 34-8 when committing fewer turnovers than its opponent, 9-22 when committing more and 9-6 when even.
100-PLUS USUALLY A W When a Beaver rushes for 100-plus yards it usually equals a victory. OSU has won 23 of its last 27 games (85%) when a rusher gains 100 - the only four losses in that period - Oct. 2, 2008 at Utah (Jacquizz Rodgers 101 yds), Oct. 24, 2009 at USC (Jacquizz 113), Oct. 16, 2010 at Washington (Jacquizz 140) and Sept. 3, 2011 vs. Sacramento State (Malcolm Agnew 223). Quizz, his brother James Rodgers, Agnew, Yvenson Bernard and Matthew Sieverson are the individuals who have accounted for the 100-yard outings.
61-7 That's the record of Oregon State when it leads after three quarters with Mike Riley as head coach. Since the start of the 2004 season it is 43-3.
WOODCHIPS Center Grant Johnson is on the Rimington Award Watch List ... tight end/H Back Joe Halahuni is on the Mackey Award Watch List ... receiver/returner James Rodgers is on the Paul Hornung Award Watch List ... Bill "Earthquake" Enyart, who lettered as a running back at OSU from 1966-68, will be inducted into the 2011 National Football Foundation Hall of Fame this December ... OSU's offensive line combines for 91 starts entering the season, the second most in the Pac-12 (Colorado, 97).