OSU vs. Stanford: Beav WRs young, ranks thin

WHEN OREGON STATE plays Stanford on Saturday, two of the three starting receivers are expected to be different than the group that began the season.

Jordan Villamin will get the start at split end, replacing the injured Richard Mullaney.

Hunter Jarmon (pictured above) is expected to start at slotback, with Week One starter Malik Gilmore backing him up.

(Oregon State’s opening possession in five of six games has featured either a second tight end or a fullback in place of the slotback. Gilmore does not have a reception this season, Jarmon has 11 for 165 yards.)

Victor Bolden, who missed a game to injury, remains the clear-cut starter at flanker.

All three are second-year players, with Villamin and Jarmon redshirt-freshmen and Bolden a true sophomore.

There’s youth behind them too. Redshirt-sophomore Rahmel Dockery backs up Bolden, Gilmore is expected to back up at both split end and at the slot although true freshman Xavier Hawkins, who had his redshirt burned when Bolden was hurt, could also see turns at flanker.

Stanford is the No. 3 team in the nation in pass defense, allowing 153 yards per game.

Sean Mannion is averaging 262.7 passing yards.

Stanford also ranks No. 1 in total defense (254.9 ypg) and scoring defense (12.3 points).

On paper, it looks to be a low-scoring game where every first down, every point, will count.

The Beavers are second in the Pac-12 in total defense (328.7) and fifth in scoring defense (24.3). And on offense, Oregon State (27.3) and Stanford (24.0) rank next to last and last in the conference in scoring offense, respectively, and 10th and 11th (392.7 and 374.7) in total offense.

Stanford tallied only 76 yards rushing and 288 yards of total offense in their loss to the previously defensively challenged Sun Devils, (who moved up to 83rd nationally in total defense after their win over Stanford).

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