CORVALLIS -- The so-called skill players, quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, etc., they get the lion's share of the credit for winning, and most of the blame when losing. They're the guys who score, after all. But college football games are oh so often won and lost in the trenches, and the Beavs will go a long ways towards victory if they nail down tight the first of the three keys..
offensive line of scrimmage
Whether it is pass blocking or
opening lanes for Quizz, the big uglies need to improve -- the five sacks and numerous hurries they
allowed against Cincinnati last week isn't going
to get it done.
Some of the blame falls on Canfield's shoulders for holding onto the
ball too long, however to give up five sacks in one game, let alone one half,
is a good recipe for a loss. And in o-line coach Mike Cavanaugh's world,
it's beyond unacceptable.
Jacquizz Rodgers is the fuel that feeds this OSU offense, but he
can do little if there are missed blocking
assignments or holding penalties that negate positive
While 65 yards in penalties isn't
horrible, the timing was a killer.
Holding, hands to the face, and illegal man
downfield calls stalled three Beaver drives and killed any momentum the offense
Momentum is everything in college football, and the Reser Stadium crowd will feed
off of every positive.
opportunities into the end
First and goal on their own five yard line and the first two OSU plays went outside for losses of four and
If the Beavs hope to be a contender
this season they'll need to get into the end zone when inside the 10 yard line.
Points left on the field seem to always come
back to haunt teams in the fourth quarter, not to mention the momentum gained
from a touchdown opposed to just a three spot.
Punch them in the
mouth.The defense did early,
breaking through and posting a safety. But the defensive front didn't harass the
quarterback enough and the offensive line lost far too many battles in the
trenches.Give the Beavers a C+
Punch them in the mouth
again.The Beavs eliminated
many of the untimely mistakes but not all of them and they came at critical
junctures. And when OSU had a chance to really apply early pressure, lesser
execution meant they settled for field goals.
Play smart:Again, mixed results on this one. Giving up sacks
and/or not throwing the ball away, missing key blocks that could have sprung a
big play, slipping a tackle here or there -- the Beavs just came up short.
Entering Pac-10 play this Saturday, it will be interesting to see if they raise