Beavers to Travel for First Time in 2012, Face No. 19 Bruins on ABC
Sept. 17, 2012
THIS WEEK: Oregon State (1-0) plays its first of two straight road games and enters a stretch of three of four dates away from Reser Stadium when it travels to the Rose Bowl to face the No. 19 UCLA Bruins at 12:30 p.m. on a ABC/ESPN 2 (check your local listings) nationally televised game.
"THE WORLD'S LONGEST TRAINING CAMP" Oregon State began official preparations for the 2012 season., Mon., Aug. 6 in anticipation of a Sept. 1 contest against Nicholls State at Reser Stadium; Hurricane Isaac forced the game to be moved to Dec. 1 as NSU was unable to leave campus which meant the Beavers began the year Sept. 8 vs. Wisconsin. OSU practiced 35 times before its first game and 44 times with just one game; thus "the world's longest training camp" per Mike Riley. The Beavers are the only team in the Pac-12 that does not have a bye the remainder of the season.
RILEY NEARING RECORD: Twelfth-year head coach Mike Riley needs two victories to pass Lon Stiner (1933-48) to become OSU's all-time leader for football victories - he currently has 73 wins. He has 46 league victories, 20th in the Pac-12 record book - one more Conference victory would move him into at tie for 19th with Tommy Prothro (former OSU and UCLA HC 1955-70) and Henry Sanders (UCLA 1949-57).
ANOTHER HEISMAN HOPEFUL CHALLENGE: OSU's rush defense will get another strong test this Saturday as it faces its second Heisman Trophy candidate in as many games in UCLA rusher Johnathan Franklin. Franklin leads the nation with an average 180.3 yards per game. The Beaver defense limited Wisconsin RB Montee Ball to 61 yards (fewest in 21 games) on 15 carries in the Sept. 8 victory over the Badgers 10-7.
IT WASN'T SCHEDULED LIKE THIS: Oregon State is known for its non-conference schedule degree of difficulty in recent years, but this is even a new level in modern history - it's the first time the Beavers have played back-to-back nationally ranked teams to begin the season. Historically, OSU has faced top 25 teams in consecutive weeks to open the year four times previous - 1950 (4 straight weeks), 1953, 1960 and 1968. The Beavers enter the week with the 14th-most difficult schedule (highest in the Pac-12) per Jeff Sagarin.
DEFENSIVELY SPEAKING: In the season opener against Wisconsin, the Beaver defense allowed just 207 total yards - the lowest mark since Washington State accumulated 192 yards Nov. 21, 2009. Last season the Badgers were 14th in the nation with nearly a 470 yards per game average. The Beavers have been out of norm the last two seasons, ranking 86th for total defense in 2010 (407.9 yards allowed) and 84th in 2011 (411.3); OSU finished 8th in the country as recently in 2007 (306.2), followed by 23rd in 2008 and 46th in 2009.
BUSTED RANKINGS: Head coach Mike Riley's teams have made a routine of beating highly ranked teams of late. Recent victims: 2012 - vs. No. 13 Wisconsin (10-7 OSU win, 2010 - at No. 9 Arizona (29-27), vs. No. 20 USC (36-7); 2009 - at No. 23 California (31-14); 2008 vs. No. 1 USC (27-21); 2007 - at No. 2 (31-28), at No. 18 Oregon (38-31 OT); 2006 - vs. No. 3 USC (33-31), at No. 24 Hawai'i (35-32); 2005 - at No. 18 California (23-20).
ARV: Oregon State received 68 votes in this week's Associated Press Poll, making it the highest team in the "also receiving votes (ARV)" listing. A win Saturday would likely push the Beavers into the top-25, where they haven't been since an Oct. 16, 2010 game at Washington (No. 24).
THE SERIES: UCLA has a 40-15-4 mark in the series, per Pac-12 Conference records, and has won the last two meetings. Last season in Corvallis the Bruins won 27-19 behind the 100-yard rushing effort by Derrick Coleman. Beaver QB Sean Mannion passed for 287 yards on 20-41 with a TD and INT in his first career start. CB Jordan Poyer was named the Pac-12 Special Teams Player of the Week thanks to an 85-yard punt return, the second-longest in school history, for a score at the end of the first half to narrow UCLA's lead to 21-10 at halftime. OSU narrowed the margin to 21-19 in the third quarter on a Trevor Romaine 30-yard field goal and a 45-yard catch and run by Jordan Bishop - the game tying 2-pt conversion failed.
GENEALOGY: We don't need Ancestry.com to help us with the recent family tree of several Beavers who happen to be the sons of former NFL standouts.
ONE BIG FAMILY: Oregon State prides itself on having a family atmosphere, in fact one website two years straight named OSU as the "most family friendly" program. This season there are numerous biological connections.
WHEATON STREAK: Senior wide receiver Markus Wheaton has quietly put together a 24-game streak of receptions; tied for 12th in the nation and third in the Pac-12 behind the 27-game streak of Keenan Allen of Cal and Marquess Wilson of WSU. Wheaton has 144 receptions, eighth for a career at OSU. He also has 1,837 yards receiving, tied for eighth with Steve Coury (1976-79). See page 9 of these game notes for Wheaton's rankings in OSU career record books.
MANNION'S NUMBERS: Sophomore co-team captain Sean Mannion enters Saturday's game already among the Beaver elite quarterbacks after just 11 starts (13 games total). He is sixth for career passing with 3,604 yards. For more on Mannion career numbers please turn to page 9.
BATTERY: The Beavers feature one of the youngest center/quarterback combinations in the country with true freshman Isaac Seumalo and sophomore quarterback Sean Mannion. Seumalo started the season opener making him the first true freshman center to start at OSU since future two-time second team Pac-10 selection Roger Levasa snapped the ball in a starting role Sept. 30, 1978 vs. Washington -- Hawai'i is the only other team in the FBS that started a true freshman for the season opener. Levasa started 37 games during his career and played professionally in the USFL for the three years with the Oakland Invaders and Portland Breakers. Seumalo is the third true freshman to start on the offensive line in the Riley era (1997-98, 2003-present) joining current teammate Michael Philipp in 2009 and Keith DiDomenico in 1997.
THE FUTURE IS NOW, BUT ... Oregon State's two-deep is full of underclassmen which bodes well for future seasons. Of the 48 possible players on offense, defense and punter/kicker, 24 are either freshmen or sophomores - this does not take into account OSU's H-Back and fullback positions - which would add another three to the equation. Specifically on offense, 13 players on the depth chart in the traditional 11 positions are underclassmen.
COLORS OF THE GAME: The OSU Athletics Department is encouraging fans to wear the colors of the team jerseys for all seven home games: Orange for Nicholls State, Wisconsin, WSU, Arizona State and Oregon; black for Utah and California. For the month of October the team will be wearing pink wristbands and socks in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The first 15,000 fans at the Oct. 20 game vs. Utah will receive a pink noodle courtesy of Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon and The Corvallis Clinic.
50 YEARS SINCE: Oregon State is celebrating the 50th anniversary of quarterback Terry Baker's Heisman Trophy winning season. Baker was the first collegiate player to win the coveted award from west of the state of Texas. He led the Beavers, then an independent, to a 9-2 record and a 6-0 victory in the Fourth Annual Liberty Bowl in Philadelphia at the time. Baker was a consensus All-America selection to go along with the Maxwell Award and Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year recipient. OSU will also honor the '62 team by inducting the members of that club, led by then eighth-year head coach Tommy Prothro, into the OSU Sports Hall of Fame Sept. 7. End Vern Burke was also on the team and a consensus All-America after leading the nation for receptions and yards.
TEAM CAPTAINS: The 2012 team captains are quarterback Sean Mannion, defensive tackle Andrew Seumalo, wide receiver Markus Wheaton and cornerback Jordan Poyer. Mannion is the first sophomore in OSU history to be named team captain.
7-GAME HOME SCHEDULE: 2012 features seven home games, if the Sept. 1 Nicholls State game is rescheduled, for the first time since the 2006 season. The Beavers also played 7-game slates in 2002 and '03 and generally that has been a positive as OSU went 17-4 at Reser Stadium during those years.
THIS CENTURY IN THE PAC-12: USC owns the most victories in the Pac-12 Conference this century with 121 (105 with vacated wins), followed by Oregon (114), OSU (89), Cal (84), UCLA (80), Arizona State (79), Stanford (73), WSU (65), Washington (65), Arizona (62). Utah has 106 victories this century and Colorado has 66.
RODGER-LESS BEAVERS: For the first time since the end of the 2006 season, Oregon State does not have James or Jacquizz Rodgers on the team. The brothers shattered several school records during their stay in Corvallis accounting for 11,310 all-purpose yards or 6.43 miles. James, who concluded his career in 2011, left OSU as the all-time leader for all-purpose yards (6,377), career receptions (222) and season receptions (91 in 2009). Jacquizz played at OSU three years (2008-10) before declaring for the NFL Draft and now plays for the Atlanta Falcons as does James, who is on the team's practice squad as of Sept. 17.
NEW COACH: Rod Perry has joined the OSU coaching staff as a full-time secondary coach after 22 seasons in the NFL, most recently with the Indianapolis Colts. Perry was an assistant with Beaver head coach Mike Riley in San Diego with the Chargers. His sons Rodney and Ryan are coaching interns on the team.
IS THE DAVE MAGGARD? It is indeed. Long time Athletic Director Dave Maggard (Cal 1972-91, Miami 1991-93, Houston 2002-09) joined the OSU team as a volunteer special assistant to Director of Athletics Bob De Carolis in August. In addition to his stints as an A.D. he was the Managing Director of Sports for the Atlanta Committee for the 1996 Summer Olympics. The `96 games aren't his only connection to the Olympics; he actually was a competitor and flagbearer for the United States in the 1968 Mexico City Games in the shot put, where he finished fifth.
NUMBERS GAME: Mike Huguenin of YahooSports compiled the following numbers for a May 11, 2012 story: "Eight schools can lay claim to having had the most balanced offenses since the turn of the century. Boise State, Houston, Missouri, Oklahoma, Oregon State, Texas, USC and Western Michigan have had at least five 1,000-yard rushers, 3,000-yard passers and 1,000-yard receivers apiece, starting with the 2000 season. The most balanced offense of them all? Using the Yahoo! Sports "Diversification Quotient," it's Oregon State and USC. Oregon State has had nine 1,000-yard rushers, six 3,000-yard passers and eight 1,000-yard receivers. USC has had six 1,000-yard rusher, seven 3,000-yard passers and 10 1,000-yard receivers." To access the full story -- http://sports.yahoo.com/news/ncaaf--a-by-the-numbers-look-at-offenses.html
WIN THE TURNOVER BATTLE, WIN THE GAME: Over the last 100 games, Oregon State is 37-8 when committing fewer turnovers than its opponent, 9-29 when committing more and 10-7 when even. The Beavers struggled in 2011, losing 31 turnovers (T113th in NCAA) and finished tied for 100th in the NCAA in turnover margin.
RESER RECORD: Oregon State's home record of 54-20 this century at Reser Stadium is third best in the Pac-12 Conference, trailing the home records of only Oregon (66-13) and USC (61-14).
RUNNING BACK U: Oregon State is the only program in the Pac-12 Conference with three running backs that rank in the top 10 for career rushing in the league; 3. Ken Simonton (1998-2001), 5,044 yards; 8. Jacquizz Rodgers (2008-10), 3,877; 9. Yvenson Bernard (2004-07), 3,862. Steven Jackson (2001-03) ranks 14th with 3,625 yards. Rodgers and Jackson both left OSU after three seasons to enter the NFL.
BEAVERS WITHOUT BORDERS: A host of current and former Oregon State student-athletes have participated in the Beavers Without Borders program that has taken them to Guatemala (Spring Break 2011), Macedonia (Summer 2011) and Ethiopia (summer 2012). Current Beaver football players Rashaad Reynolds, Markus Wheaton, Brian Watkins and Josh Andrews have been on one of those trips each. On those trips the group assisted a building of a house for needy families. There were matching funds, but many of these student-athletes did their own fundraising for the trips.
65-7: 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 47-3.
ONE OF THREE: Second-year athletic trainer Ariko (uh-REE-ko) Iso (E-so) is one of only three female football head trainers in the FBS -- Mary Van Heiden at Central Florida and Dawn Hearn at UTEP are the other two. Iso joined the program in late spring of 2011after being the only female trainer in the NFL (Steelers).
RPI THIS: Since the 2003 season, when Mike Riley took the controls of the program for the second time, 10 of the 12 road non-conference opponents have finished the season in the Associated Press Top 25 2004 - LSU (No. 16); 2005 - Louisville (No. 20); 2006 -- Boise State (No. 6) and Hawai'i (No. 24); 2007 - Cincinnati (No. 20); 2008 - Utah (No. 2) and Penn State (No. 8); 2010 - TCU (No. 2) and Boise State (No. 9); 2011 - Wisconsin (No. 10). Only Fresno State in 2003 and UNLV in 2009 failed to make the final poll. Thanks to Brooks Hatch formerly of the Corvallis Gazette-Times for this nugget.
100-PLUS USUALLY A W: When a Beaver rushes for 100-plus yards it usually equals a victory. OSU has won 24 of its last 28 games (86%) 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).
RULE CHANGES: The NCAA has adopted the following rules changes for the 2012 season: 1. Kickoffs from 35-yard line from the 30, mirroring a similar change by the NFL in the 2011 season and rescinding a rule change made in the 2007 season. 2. The kicking team has only a five-yard running head start on kickoffs, again mirroring the NFL changes in 2011. 3. Touchbacks move from the 20-yard line to the 25-yard line only on kickoffs and free kicks after a safety. Touchbacks on punts rolling into the end zone or fumbles into the end zone remain at the 20-yard line. 4. Players are forbidden to leap over other players when blocking punts. 5. Players who lose their helmets during a play (except when caused by fouls such as grabbing the facemask) have to leave the field for one play. 6. Offensive players in the tackle box at the snap who are not in motion are allowed to block below the waist legally without restriction. All other players are restricted from blocking below the waist with some exceptions (i.e. blocking straight-on), modifying a rule change from the 2011 season.
WE'RE NUMBER 6!: Corvallis, home to Oregon State University, ranks sixth in the nation for best college towns for 2012 by Livability.com. No other Pac-12 city/town ranks in the top-10.
WOODCHIPS: The Beavers will start a freshman running back for the second year in a row. In 2011, Malcolm Agnew became the first true freshman to start the season opener at running back at OSU in the modern era. This Saturday, Storm Woods, a redshirt freshman who won the starting job after a strong offseason, is expected to take the field with the first team ... cornerback Jordan Poyer is on the Lott IMPACT Trophy, the Bednarik Award, Bronko Nagurski Trophy, Jim Thorpe Award, Paul Hornung Award Watch Lists ... defensive end Scott Crichton is on the Lombardi Award Watch List ... wide receiver Markus Wheaton is on the Biletnikoff Award Preseason Watch List ... Jordan Poyer and Markus Wheaton are on the Senior Bowl Watch List ... the 1962 Oregon State football team, which won the Liberty Bowl that season, was inducted into the OSU Athletics Hall of Fame, Fri., Sept. 7 ... freshman OL David Keller joined the program during the bye week. Due to NCAA regulations, Keller will sit out the 2012 season after transferring from Fresno State.