Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

He Said. She Said. Stanford wrap

Time for the He said-She said team to evaluate the Stanford game. What went well? What needs work?

She said: Offense

Oh the Beaver offense.  I’ve seen so much discussion in The Lodge of late lamenting the offensive coordinators, but at this point, the Beavers have one deep threat in Victor Bolden, third string quarterback, and a gimpy starting running back.  Yes, the run game has been good, but a one dimensional offense is not a productive one, especially against the better defenses in the conference.

McMaryion had trouble completing passes all day.  He tended to lock onto his primary receiver which led to two interceptions (and subsequently ten Cardinal points).  He was 42% passing for 137 yards, although 75 yards came on one play to Bolden, meaning the Beavers had 62 yards through the air the rest of the day.

The offense had eight first downs. The entire game. Time of possession was also skewed heavily in Stanford’s favor, with the Beavers offense having control of the ball 20:56 to the Cardinal’s 39:04.

Tough to win when you can’t sustain drives.

She said offensive grade:  D

He said Offense:

Quick, what has Oregon State done better at this year than Kansas State, USC, UCLA, Notre Dame, Colorado and Arizona?   

If you said scoring more points on the Stanford defense than every single one of those teams have, you’d be correct!

Stanford’s got a salty defense any way you slice it.   Yes, they had a two game stretch where they got rolled against the Washington schools, but have otherwise been one of the best defenses in the nation.

They showed that on Saturday, to the detriment of the Beaver O.

So, maybe the offense isn’t that far away, given the lack of success teams are having in general against the Stanford D.  

I’m hanging my hat on that.

He said offensive grade:  C

She said Defense:

I am more and more impressed with the strides being made on defense each and every game.

Christian McCaffrey is going to get yards, he is that good and more than likely destined to leave early for the NFL.

Even allowing Stanford 365 rushing yards, the Beavers were able to hang tough when they needed to, holding Stanford to five field goals attempts (four were made).

Stanford’s game plan is to continue to run the ball and wear defenses out with the physical nature of their run game.  It worked, especially given the time of possession discrepancy, the defense was on the field seemingly all day (in fact they were on the field all but 1:36 of the fourth quarter).

Going into half, the Beavers were only down six points and that is with a missed field goal by Garrett Owens.  

They were in it. It is just too bad the offense couldn’t get anything going to help them out.  

Defensive Grade She said: B

He said Defense:

Unfortunately for the Beaver D, McCaffrey got healthy in the last few weeks.   It’s a tough task for any defense to slow that guy down.

Stanford’s game plan was exactly what we saw.  Wear down the defense with a bruising run game and don’t let your inexperienced QB torpedo the rest of the offense.

Everyone knows this is what’s coming from Stanford.  And it’s still difficult to stop.

Yes, they don’t have quite the explosiveness that they’ve had in the past.  But they have the beef upfront and they flexed that throughout the game, and especially in the fourth quarter, when they chewed up 11:24 on the clock in that final stanza.  

I thought the Beaver D did had a solid game.   They aren’t quite at the salty level of Stanford’s D, but they are on the right trajectory.  

And how about a true freshman getting the Giant Killer award this week?   Especially one that just had his redshirt removed!  That is exciting for the future.

He said Defense Grade:  B-

She Said: Coaching Overall:

Rebuilding projects are not for the faint of heart. I’ve seen it suggested that the Beavers don’t have the right offensive coordinators in place, but those same coordinators were brilliant in their play calls when the Beavers beat Cal or in the first half against Washington State.

Defensively I think we can agree that the Beavers are getting better and better, and it is great to see some of the young recruits brought in by Andersen’s staff making big plays.

Offensively, everyone will feel better when the Beavers can have a couple deep threat targets downfield and a quarterback that can get them the ball.  It is a work in progress that injuries have hampered.  

The entire team should be applauded for their grit and fight.  They are not giving up and they are so close to a big upset.

Before we throw any coaches out with the bathwater, let’s reevaluate in another couple of years to see how the offense is performing.

She said grade: B

He said: Coaching/Overall:

Another game where Oregon State beat the spread. The Beavers are now 6-2 against-the-spread this year.  That means they are exceeding expectations, at least from a national, betting line perspective.   There are only two Power 5 teams better than that, Auburn at 7-1 and Colorado at 8-0.

Now, it might not be showing in the win/loss column, but it is showing up.  We see it in the defensive fight.  We see it in the close games that weren’t close last year.   

Are there frustrations? Of course!  This team could potentially have 3 more W’s in the win column.  

I have been scratching my head at some of the offensive play calls all year.  Heck, I was yelling for McMaryion to keep the ball on the read-option for the entire first half.  Lo and behold, when he finally did, he picked up 9 yards.   The second time he did, he scored a touchdown.   

If you aren’t going to run the QB out of that formation when called for, why run that formation?  

But I’m going to continue with my patience theme.  This is a growing, improving team.  It’s showing up in competitiveness on the field and in the Vegas sports-book.  

Keep trending in this direction and the results should ultimately show up in the column that matters.

He Said grade:  C+


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