Washington at Oregon State notebook

An improving Beaver defense...series history between UW and OSU...very special teams...third down conversions and more inside this week's Beaver football notebook.

Head coach: Tyrone Willingham (Third season)
(Career: 71-62-1 | At UW: 6-11)
Current ranking: NR
Current record: 4-2, 2-1 in the Pac-10
Streak: One game losing streak
Head coach: Mike Riley (Third season)
(Career: 30-33 | At OSU: 30-33)
Current ranking: NR
Current record: 2-3, 0-2 in the Pac-10
Streak: Two game losing streak


Last time Oregon State and Washington met...
Nov. 5, 2005 in Seattle - Oregon State 18, Washington 10
A year after booting a school-record five field goals in a win at Husky Stadium, Oregon State kicker Alexis Serna did one better in the Beavers' 2005 visit, connecting on six field goals to provide all of OSU's offense in an 18-10 victory over Washington on a rain-soaked day in the Emerald City. Washington's only touchdown came in the game's final minute when backup QB Johnny DuRocher connected with Craig Chambers on a five-yard TD pass to cap a 13-play drive.

Neither team was able to mount much offense as the Beavers out-gained the Huskies just 263 yards to 226. OSU QB Matt Moore threw for 136 yards on 17-of-27 passing while Yvenson Bernard had a solid rushing day, compiling 122 yards on 35 carries. Isaiah Stanback was 5-for-12 for 104 yards while DuRocher went 11-for-30 for 103 and a score. The Husky running game was led by 53 yards on 19 carries from senior James Sims ... more from BF.com


Last time Washington played...
Oct. 7, 2006 - USC 26, Washington 20
All Tyrone Willingham has been asking for on the road is a chance to win the game in the fourth quarter. He got all that and more from his Washington team, but time ran out on the Huskies as they were driving toward a chance to upset the No. 3 USC Trojans in Los Angeles.

But instead of Traveler running out on the field, it was a zebra that stymied UW's final shot at a monumental upset, leaving the Huskies with a bitter 26-20 taste in their mouths - something no moral victory would satiate ... more from DawgMan.com


Last time Oregon State played...
Oct. 7, 2006 - Washington State 13, Oregon State 6
The Oregon State defense turned in a their best performance of the year recording five sacks and 12 tackles for loss, but the Beaver offense managed just six points in a 13-6 loss to Washington State. The offense turned the ball over five times with three of them coming in WSU territory.

WR Sammie Stroughter had six catches for a career high 124 yards while returning four punts for 100 yards and was close to taking back a couple of punts for touchdowns. RB Yvenson Bernard had 17 carries for 91 yards while QB Matt Moore completed 18 of 34 for 223 yards, his first 200 yard performance of the season, with no touchdowns and one crucial interception ... more from BF.com


Series history (UW leads 57-29-4, 25-15-0 in Husky Stadium).
Washington and Oregon State meet for the 91st time since the series started in 1897 Saturday.  Washington holds a 57-29-4 series advantage and has won 15 of the last 18 meetings and 25 of the last 29, but have lost the last two in Seattle.  The teams have split the last six meetings.  The series against the Beavers is the second longest active series in Washington football history and third longest in terms of total meetings.

This is the third consecutive time OSU has traveled to Washington. The Beavers haven't played road games against the Huskies in consecutive seasons since 1940, when they traveled to Seattle for five straight seasons. From 1902 to 1940, all but six of 27 UW-OSU games were played in Seattle, with four in Corvallis, one in Portland and one in Albany, Ore.


Washington connections.
The most notable connection between the Washington and Oregon State football teams is the fact that
Nigel Burton, the Beavers' fourth-year cornerbacks coach, graduated from the UW in 1999 after having spent three seasons playing for the Huskies after having transferred from Pacific. One of Burton's most memorable on-field highlights came against the Beavers in 1998 when the batted down a two-point conversion pass attempt to secure a Husky win. Also, as far as coaching staff crossover goes, Beavs defensive line coach Greg Newhouse, Husky offensive coordinator Tim Lappano and UW wide receivers coach Eric Yarber all worked on Dennis Erickson's staff at Oregon State.  Finally, OSU defensive coordinator Mark Banker and Huskies running backs coach Trent Miles served on the same coaching staff at Hawaii in 1995.

Oregon State's current roster includes only four players that graduated from Washington high schools: freshman TE Joe Halahuni, who will enroll in Janurary, (Orting HS), sophomore LS Aaron Carlson (Olympia HS ... same HS as Husky FB Luke Kravitz), freshman OL Alex Linnenkohl (Capital HS) and freshman S Adam Mobley (Vancouver/Skyview HS). Somewhat surprisingly, Washington's roster includes only one player from the state of Oregon: OT Eric Berglund (Beaverton).

Several Huskies and Beavers attended the same high school somewhere other than Washington or Oregon. Husky Wilson Afoa attended Saint Louis High in Honolulu, the same as OSU's Tavita Thompson. Beavers QB Matt Moore prepped at Hart High in Valencia, Calif., the same as Huskies linebacker Dan Howell. And Husky DE Brandon Ala and OSU C Ryan Pohl are both graduates of Hawaii's Kamehameha High.


Serna's second home.
PK Alexis Serna has made 45 career field goals, 24 (11) percent have come at Husky Stadium. Serna is 11-for-11 at one of the most notoriously difficult places for kickers. After both games, played in inclement weather, he was named the Pac-10 Special Teams Player of the Week. Serna booted then the longest field goal of his career as time expired in the first half of the 2004 game -- 55 yards into the wind.  His 11 kicks have come from 18, 23, 25, 27, 28, 31, 32, 35, 41, 46, 55. The early forecast is for 55 degrees Saturday.


Defense improving.
Oregon State enters Saturday's game tied for third (UCLA) in the Pac-10 and tied for seventh in the nation for quarterback sacks averaging 3.4 per game (17 total).  OSU has 11 players with sacks and the 17 total is just five shy of all of last season's mark.

Defensive linemen Joe Lemma and William `Akau'ola Vea share the team lead with three.

In addition to Oregon State's 17 quarterback sacks, it has also added 25 tackles behind the line of scrimmage. The 42 total tackles-for-loss averages to 8.4 per game, fifth in the NCAA -- only Florida International, Connecticut, Oklahoma State and Middle Tennessee have a higher average. Linebacker Derrick Doggett leads the team for TFL with six, followed by linebacker Alan Darlin and lineman Vea with 5.5. OSU TFLs have accounted for 205 total yards in losses.


Third down woes.
The Beavers have struggled on third downs converting 22 of 63 (34.5%), eighth worst in the conference.  And as the game wears on it doesn't get any better as OSU has converted just 4 of 18 (22%) in the fourth quarter. 


Very special teams.
After averaging 28.0 per kick in the opener, freshman Kyle Loomis has since averaged 42.3 yards per attempt. Over the last two games he has averaged 48.7. Loomis ranks 55th in the nation for overall average at 39.7 and is the highest true freshman punter and second overall for freshman -- Iowa State's Mike Brandtner is a redshirt-freshman and is 45th at 40.5 yards.

Junior Sammie Stroughter is second in the nation for punt return yards per attempt at 23.6 and junior Coye Francies is fifth in the Pac-10 for kickoff return yards per attempt at 22.2. Overall, OSU is first in the Pac-10 for punt return yards per attempt at 20.9 -- the program has never led the conference and finished second only once since team punt
return yards have been kept by the league (since 1980).


Additional notes.

  • Husky head coach Tyrone Willingham posted a 3-3 record against the Beavers while at Stanford, including a 1-1 mark head-to-head vs. Mike Riley.  Including his team at Stanford and Washington he is 3-4 versus Oregon State.

  • OSU is leading the Pac-10 in penalty yardage and is tied for third in lost turnovers, for instance. OSU also has suffered six losses by 18 points or more in its last 14 games. And OSU hasn't scored more than 18 points in any of its last five Pac-10 games, and has lost four straight conference home games.

  • Washington has allowed just five sacks in six games this season, the lowest total in the conference.

  • Washington has played all three of the Northwest teams in a season on 77 prior occasions. Over those 77 seasons in which Oregon, OSU and WSU were all on the UW schedule, the Dawgs have swept all three 28 times. In the meantime, the Huskies have lost to all three in the same season on only four occasions (1948, 1968, 1973, 2004 and 2005).

  • Over the last three games, wins over UCLA and Arizona and a loss at USC, the Huskies have allowed just four touchdowns while scoring nine.

  • This has nothing to do with the game, but I found it to be an interesting fact.  Washington is one of just eight NCAA Division I-A programs that has never faced a non-Division I-A opponent since the current division setup was established in 1978. The seven remaining schools that have yet to play a non-Division I-A opponent since the advent of the current format are Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, USC, UCLA and Washington.

  • OSU is tied for second in Pac-10 in turnover margin (+4, 1.0 per game) after being dead last (-14) in the Conference in that category last year.

  • Oregon State is 26-5 when leading after three quarters under head coach Mike Riley, including 12-1 in the combined 2004, ‘05 and ‘06 seasons.

  • RB Yvenson Bernard ranks second in the league in rushing at 99.0 yards per game and has topped the 100-yard mark in eight of his last 13 games. He also is Pac-10 co-leader in rushing TDs with five.

  • PK Alexis Serna has converted 77 consecutive PATs and connected on 45-of-54 career field goal attempts. He has 212 career points, good for fourth on OSU's career list, and is just seven points shy of the OSU career scoring record by a kicker (219, Ryan Cesca, 1999-2002).

  • At 4-2, the Huskies already have more victories than in the past two seasons combined (3).

  • WR Sonny Shackelford has posted three consecutive 100-yard receiving games and is tied for second in the Conference with five TD receptions.

  • The Husky defense has allowed just four TDs over last three games.

  • QB Isaiah Stanback ranks second in the Pac-10 in total offense at 250.3 yards per game.

  • P Sean Douglas leads the Pac-10 and is fourth in the nation in punting with an average of 46.6 yards per boot.



Dan Norz is the publisher of BeaverFootball.com.  He can be reached at webmaster@beaverfootball.com

BeaverBlitz Top Stories