The Beaver Beat (November 7, 2006)

Things were looking pretty bleak for Oregon State. The once-pathetic, now-lucky Beavers were fresh off a victory over the once-powerful, now-overrated, but still a much better team Trojans. The once-good, once-down and out, now-good again after victories over the two worst teams in the conference Sun Devils were on the horizon. Like Mike Price on Sunday morning, a hangover seemed imminent.

Things were looking pretty bleak for Oregon State. The once-pathetic, now-lucky Beavers were fresh off a victory over the once-powerful, now-overrated, but still a much better team Trojans. The once-good, once-down and out, now-good again after victories over the two worst teams in the conference Sun Devils were on the horizon. Like Mike Price on Sunday morning, a hangover seemed imminent.

Then the game started.

This week, Da Beat will be reporting from Noah's Ark as the Willamette Valley slowly fills up with rainwater. We'll be talking about game day in the rain, which was possibly the only thing that could make ASU fans whinier. After that, your intrepid reporter will put on the Ms. Cleo hat and take you deep inside the mindset of every fan base around the Pac-10, predict the outcome of the UCLA game (HINT: It's the same as pretty much every other prediction), reveal the Post of the Week, unleash the Pole of Power and, for once, even give you some insider news on a surprise brewing in Beaver Nation.

I'M SINGING IN THE RAIN…

Considering that, as written last week, your intrepid reporter enjoyed the USC game from the cozy confines of seat 20A on a Frontier Airlines flight, just being back in Reser Stadium was exactly what I needed. Unfortunately, almost 5000 people from last week's game seem to have had just the opposite idea.

Up there on the list of things that I really didn't expect from this season (alongside beating USC and fearing next year without Matt Moore at the helm ) was following up on our biggest win in a couple seasons with an absolutely pathetically-attended game. How is it that a conference game, after beating the third-ranked team in the nation, without any television coverage can get BARELY 38,000 fans?

Is there even a precedent for that? Can you imagine if, back in 1999, when OSU beat Cal to clinch the first winning season in 28 years, if 29,000 people showed up the next week to watch the Arizona game?

What is it? Are our fans really so dispassionate that they'll stay home because of rain – in the state of OREGON? Were the fans that showed up last week only there because the Ducks weren't in town? Did all of the big SUV's that litter the Reser Stadium parking garage sink to the bottom of the river that was I-5?

Of course, the Arizona State fans themselves didn't help anything. A raucous contingent of approximately 13 Sun Devil fans made their way to Reser on Saturday, including the three flag-waving cheerleaders and Sparky the Ambiguously Gay Mascot.

Most of the ASU fans were probably still home on their computers figuring out reasons why beating Stanford and Washington made them a good team. Or whining that the Beaver fans on their boards didn't see it that way.

Sixty minutes later, the game was in the books and the Sun Devils were already changing their "Rudy Carpenter for Heisman" signs to include the word "lynching". Beaver fans on the other hand were happy to find that the much-discussed hangover never materialized, with the assistance of lots of hydration.

Sure, I was soaked through my poncho and four layers. Sure, I had to stay for the entire fourth quarter to make sure that ASUndevilfan really would have to make "beaverfan4ever and all Oregon State football fans own my stupid ass" for his signature for the rest of the season. Sure, I had to endure the nasty looks from the fans around me when my girlfriend stood up and cheered when they announced the score the Duck game.

But would I have it any other way? No way.

CALL ME NOW…

Hello, muh baybays. Dis heah Ms. Beato and me heah to tells ya all abut de Pac-10 con-fer-ence. De cahds don lie, and nee-dur do I:

ARIZONA: Wow, is Mike Stoops really related to his brother? The guy can recruit like crazy for us, but I'm a little worried that he's only won 10 games in all of his time here. Is there any way that Lute Olson can coach football, too? It would be nice to score a point against USC sometime while Stoops is here. Is it basketball season yet? Wait, never mind. Well, it could be worse – we could be Stanford.

ARIZONA STATE: Do we really have the same league record as the Wildcats? Crap, we really do suck. Is it too late to declare ourselves the best 5-4 team in the country? Well, at least we didn't hire Dan Hawkins. Man, forget this, I'm going to make out with some coeds.

CALIFORNIA: Hahahahahahahahahahaha. Oh God this is fun.

OREGON: Is there such a thing as a spread defense? I wonder if Jason Fife has any eligibility left. Are all of the players we recruit made of graham crackers? God, I hope the Colisseum has a lot of benches on the sidelines. Why isn't anybody talking about us as national championship contenders? Hey Riese, is there any way we can pay you to get into the BCS computers to make that happen?

OREGON STATE: Is it Civil War week yet?

UCLA: No, really, we're as good as the Trojans! Look at us! LOOOOOOK AT USSSSSS!

USC: Alright, Carroll, that's strike one. Oh, and there is no strike two. This kind of mediocrity just won't stand.

WASHINGTON: At this point, we should be able to get a winning season sometime within the decade. Please? Well, it could be worse – we could be Stanford.

WASHINGTON STATE: I wonder what it feels like to actually live up to expectations.

STANFORD: Man do we suck. Well, it could be worse – oh wait, no it couldn't.

HEADINGS WITHOUT CONTEXT JUST DON'T MAKE SENSE

We'll make this very simple:

*Matt Moore will not be emotional about this game, until after Oregon State wins, when he will run out to the fifty-yard line and take a dump on the UCLA logo. ChazReingold of eDuck fame will then become very nervous.

*Oregon State has won four straight, UCLA has lost four straight. It is inconceivable that OSU could have more momentum at this point.

*Can anyone tell me that last time a backup quarterback beat OSU? It wasn't this season (Nate Longshore started in the Cal game, Alex Brink in the Wazzu game and Jared Zabransky in the Boise State game). It wasn't last season, from what I can see and remember. Joe Cowan might want to put in a little more time in practice this week.

*New rule: The word "hangover" needs to be eliminated from the vocabulary of all Beaver fans. We weren't hungover after Washington, Arizona or USC. There is absolutely no reason to believe that the Beavs won't be just as prepared this week as last week or the week before. They're playing on fire and don't show any indication of slowing down. This team would literally have to regress to lose another conference game this season.

*Final score: OSU 34, UCLA 17

POST OF THE WEEK

From BruinReportOnline's message board comes the Post of the Week. A (probably faux) USC fan said that the Trojans "forgot" that they had the game against the Beavers. BongoTheTypingChimp chimes in with this:

So how did the Trojans get to the Stadium last Saturday?

When they got on the plane from LA, didn't they start asking questions, like "why are we flying to Oregon when we don't have a game this weekend?" And when they landed at the airport, did they wander around the terminal asking, "Why are we here? Where are we supposed to go?"

Did they ask the coaches during the week why they were watching game film on OSU and practicing against scout teams of OSU's Offense and Defense, or did the coaches forget to show game film or run OSU-focused practices because they forgot about the game too?

How did they get dressed in their game uniforms? Did someone else who remembered that there was a game give them some help? Are USC's equipment managers the only ones who remembered the game?

Who tied their shoes in the locker room?

When the Trojans came out of the tunnel and there was a stadium full of fans, did the Trojans wonder why so many people were at a stadium where there was no game to be played?

When the refs spotted the ball and OSU started running offensive plays, did USC players wonder what kind of crazy deal is this and who are these strangers in black shirts?

Is alzheimers running so rampant on the USC campus that 85 players and an entire coaching staff forgot they had a game?

Who spoons applesauce into Pete Carroll's mouth these days?


Congrats, BTTC.

POLE OF POWER

1. Cal (Was so used to typing "USC" that they originally occupied this spot in the first draft. No more. Is anyone having more fun than Longshore right now? Or hating life more than Joe Ayoob?)
2. USC (Occupying this spot on sheer talent and coaching alone. Nowhere near the best TEAM, however)
3. OSU (Is there any scarier team to play in the conference right now?
4. UO (This is more of a Wazzu thing than an Oregon thing)
5. WSU (You beat Oregon and Oregon State and top it of by…losing to Arizona?)
6. ASU (As someone pointed out on the BF.com boards, did Sparky do ANYTHING in the second half of the Beaver game?)
7. UCLA (Ben Olson said to be practicing this week. And hey, Yvenson Bernard was going to play against USC. Wait, bad example.)
8. Arizona (Stoops shrines popping up all around the state of Oregon)
9. Washington (Right back where they started

(The Beaver Beat is currently floating somewhere along what is now the Willamette River. Please send help.

thebeaverbeat@beaverfootball.com)

BeaverBlitz Top Stories