Oregon vs Oregon State: How Ducks Will Expose OSU as Most Overrated Team in CFB
Boy, is it good for the Civil War to mean something again.
In 2008 and 2009, the rivalry game between Oregon and Oregon State was a semifinal for the Rose Bowl, but with the Beavers' irrelevancy in the Pac-12 over the past two years, it became just a game for bragging rights.
While Oregon State's shot at a Pac-12 Championship is out of the equation at this point in the season, Oregon has a shot to return to the title game if a win in Corvallis is coupled with a Stanford loss to UCLA.
Despite their title hopes being dashed, the Beavers have been quite a success story this season. However, with only two marquee wins coming against UCLA and Wisconsin, Oregon State has been called overrated by multiple members of the media.
The following slides will detail how Oregon will expose its in-state foes on Saturday.
Pressuring Sean Mannion
Sean Mannion has been a tale of two quarterbacks this season.
He started as the catalyst for this Oregon State team, but after two multiple-interception games (three against Washington State, four against Washington), Mannion's ability to lead the Beavers has been questioned.
The OSU running game has been pretty nonexistent this season, which means if the Ducks can put pressure on Mannion and force him to make bad throws and shut down the air raid, then Oregon has a great shot at exposing the Beavers.
Controlling the Line of Scrimmage on Offense
You can be assured of one thing this Saturday: Oregon State is going to show the same resiliency and hustle to the ball we saw last weekend against Stanford.
The past two weeks, the Oregon offensive line has done an absolutely terrible job of containing pressure from the opposition, and if it continues to do so, the Beavers will easily end the Ducks' four-game win streak in the Civil War.
Kenjon Barner needs to be allowed a chance to get past the line of scrimmage before a hoard of defenders can make contact with him if the Ducks would like to win this game. Marcus Mariota also needs a chance to be able to go through all of his reads.
Containing Markus Wheaton and Brandin Cooks
Anyone remember a certain dynamic receiver duo that the Ducks already faced?
I think they wore red and yellow or some color scheme like that.
Well, I hope you remember Markus Wheaton and Brandin Cooks, Oregon State's own dynamic duo that could spell trouble for the Ducks in Corvallis.
Oregon's secondary has had the misfortune of losing not only All-American safety John Boyett, but also his replacement Avery Patterson to knee injuries, which means that it cannot allow itself to leave either Wheaton or Cooks wide open as it did with opposing receivers in the Washington State game.
Making Field Goals
Yes, I am indeed talking to you, Alejandro Maldonado.
Do you hate Autzen Stadium during big games or can you just not handle pressure?
You can expect the Beavers to play their hearts out against the Ducks and bring the same resiliency that we saw from Stanford, which means the game could in fact come down to a field goal.
If it does, maybe Mariota could line up as the kicker. He's been good at everything else so far, so what's to say that he couldn't kick?
Getting a Big Lead Quickly
Am I the only one who thinks Oregon has been a bit slow the past couple of weeks?
In fact, the Ducks got off to such a bad start against Stanford that, for the first time all season, they weren't on the scoreboard for the entire first quarter.
In order to expose Oregon State, Oregon will have to jump out to a big lead, as it did against USC, Arkansas State and Arizona State.