INJURY UPDATE: Oregon State is almost half way through the year and the injuries have started to pile up. CB Brandon Hardin and DT Mitchell Hunt both broke a bone in one of their hands Thursday making them the third and fourth members of the football team, with the others being OT Wilder McAndrews and S Suaesi Tuimaunei, who have broken a bone in their hand and will play with a cast.
“We are going to hold the record for the most broken hands,” coach Mike Riley said.
It looks like CB Brandon Hughes will miss the WSU game with a hamstring pull, but S Al Afalava (groin), DE Victor Butler (ankle) and WR Sammie Stroughter (hip) should all be back to almost 100-percent by Saturday.
A LOOK AHEAD TO WSU: Washington State currently holds a 1-5 overall record and a 0-3 conference record and has failed to score more than 17 points this season while giving up an average of 48.2 points per game. Riley knows his players could be overlooking the Cougars, but he expects his team to come out hungry this Saturday. "I think our team will be fired up for redemption of some sort,'' Riley said. "I don't know anything about the Cougars yet. I know they have had a tough go this season, but we're not going to assume anything.''
ONE MORE CHANCE: Sophomore kicker Justin Kahut will get one more opportunity to right the ship against Washington State before the coaches try another player for field goal and PAT duties. Kahut is 3 of 6 on field goals, with a long of 37, and 7 of 8 on extra points.
LEADING THE PAC-10: Two Oregon State players lead the Pac-10 in their respective statistic category. Freshman RB Jacquizz Rodgers continues to lead the Conference of Champions in rushing yards per game (110.0) while senior S Greg Laybourn leads in tackles per game (9.0). Laybourn has led the team in tackles three times this year.
THIRD DOWN CONVERSIONS ON OFFENSE: The offensive success of the football team can be closely tied to their third down conversion rate. In the Stanford and Penn State games, both losses, the OSU offense converted just 10 of 29 (34%) third down opportunities. Against Hawaii and USC, both wins, they converted 15 of 33 (46%) third down chances. Against Utah, another loss, their conversion percentage dropped to 38% (3 of 13).
ROSE BOWL SCENARIO: Despite the team dropping to 2-3 for the third consecutive year Oregon State still has a shot at the Rose Bowl if they win out, USC wins out and Stanford loses one more game. The Beavers have seven games, four at home, left on their schedule.
IMPROVING PUNTING: Throwing out the occasional kick off the side of his foot freshman punter Johnny Hekker is improving from game to game. In the first two games of the year he averaged just 28.5 yards per punt. In the last three games he is averaging 38.7 yards per punt.
ACCURATE PASSER: Junior QB Lyle Moevao continues to be on pace to set the OSU completion percentage in one season. He is at 62.7 percent, completing 118 of 188. Matt Moore holds the record, having completed 229 of 378 passes (60.6 percent) in 2006. He also is on pace to have the fourth-highest total yards in a season with 3,579
SEE QUIZZ RUN: Freshman RB Jacquizz Rodgers is on pace to accumulate 1,320 yards rushing this season which would eclipse the OSU freshman record of Ken Simonton’s 1,028 in 1998. Simonton was a redshirt-freshman while Rodgers is a true freshman. Rodgers leads the nation in rushing among true freshmen (110.0 yards per game) and is 16th overall.
LOOK OUT!: Before Thursday's clash with Utah the Beaver offensive line was averaging a sack every 32 attempts. After giving up three sacks against Utah they are averaging a sack every 23 snaps.
ON THE PI CALL: Coach Riley is never one to cry over spilled milk, but after reviewing the game film he says that the ball was way behind the receiver and the flag should have never been thrown. “The ball was never going to be caught and it was way behind him, and Greg Laybourn. The quarterback was getting rid of the ball because we had a free rusher up the middle, Keith Pankey.”
NO NEWS IS BAD NEWS: The original drop dead date for DE Simi Kuli arriving at OSU was last Friday, but that date got pushed to Monday. The bottom line is no news is bad news so don't expect the five star athlete to be putting on the Orange and Black this season.