Oregon will be hosting their in-state rivals Oregon State on Saturday afternoon in the Civil War. Both teams are in interesting spots. Oregon State will be looking to make a bowl game for the first time since 2013, while Oregon really has nothing material to play for. Their spot in the Pac-12 title game is already clinched. If they win the Pac-12 title game they will go to the Rose Bowl.
However, this is a rivalry game. On top of that, it’s senior day for a group of seniors who have endured a ton. It’s also a chance for the first 10-win regular season for the first time since 2014.
Oregon Hosts Oregon State: Keys For an Oregon Win
Put Last Week Behind You
In the last two matchups in the rivalry, Oregon has won by a combined 124-25. However, this is an improved Beavers team. The defense still isn’t good, but this is an offense that can put up points.
With the way the Duck’s defense, especially the secondary, played last week, if they aren’t dialed-in and playing disciplined, this Beavers offense can score on them.
With the double-moves given up in last week’s loss to Arizona State, the Beavers are likely going to attempt similar moves, especially with Isaiah Hodgins, who is one of the top receivers in the conference and in the country.
Basically, don’t let Arizona State beat you twice. We see it a lot in college football. And while it’s a rivalry game, which is always easier to get up for, putting an emotional and deflating loss behind you is always difficult.
Run the Ball Down Their Throat
Oregon State is 10th in the conference in rush yards allowed per game and seventh in the conference in yards allowed per carry. Both of those numbers are worse than what the Arizona State defense was bringing to the table.
At times, Oregon was running the ball down the Sun Devils throats last week, but for some reason, they would stray away from it.
In this game, if the offensive line is imposing its will, and the Ducks are getting 4-8 yards per carrying, do not stray away from it. This offensive line has a chance to really wear down Oregon State.
Of course, Justin Herbert and his receiver should be able to do damage as well.
Herbert had a rough game last Saturday, but he is very capable, especially when the running game is clicking. Also, Herbert has had big games in his career when he is coming off of a game with multiple interceptions.
With that being said, Oregon should be able to dominate the line of scrimmage. If they do that, Oregon can really wear down the Beavers defense.
Pressure Jake Luton
Oregon State quarterback Jake Luton has had a strong season, but he is a statue in the pocket.
It’s pretty simple. If Oregon rushes the passer like they did last week, Luton has weapons and he’ll be able to find those weapons and move the ball. However, if the front seven can get to him, he will have nowhere to go. That will put the Beavers offense behind the chains.
Oregon jumping out to an early lead would also be helpful because it would make passing situations more obvious, which makes rushing the passer easier.
Oregon State vs Oregon: Overall Thoughts
This is a game that Oregon should win. It’s as simple as that. Oregon is the better team, and not only that, they are better in the trenches than Oregon State.
While Oregon State has improved by a good amount this season when they have played superior teams in the trenches they have really struggled. See Utah and Washington.
With that being said, this is a rivalry. Not only that, but Oregon State is playing for a bowl game. If anyone associated with Oregon thinks the Beavers are going to come in and lay down like they have been the last two years you’re crazy.
Oregon State will come into this game and battle. However, after suffering tough losses under Mario Cristobal so far, Oregon has bounced back. It’s hard to imagine Oregon not coming out ready to play, especially on a senior day for a senior class who has been through so much.
Top Photo: Randy L. Rasmussen/The Oregonian