“What’s the Beavers’ record going to be this season?”
Without a doubt, I’m not the only Beavers fan hearing that question a lot these days. And for good reason. Something about a new coach, right? 🙂 My on-the-fly answer has been 5-7. The realist in me says 4-8, the optimist in me says 6-6, and the homer in me says, if everything goes right and with a little luck, 8-4. But what happens when I actually sit back and think about it? Here goes nothing!
Game 1 – Weber State. Weber State finished 2-10 in the Big Sky last season, and has struggled in recent years against FBS teams. While the Beavers have a lot of unknowns heading into this game, they should be able to beat the Wildcats soundly. Verdict: W, 1-0
Game 2 – Michigan. On the road in one of the biggest and most storied college stadiums. Against Jim Harbaugh. That’s two tough factor’s right there. The good news is I wouldn’t be surprised if this a close one. But I think the Beavers come up short. Verdict: L, 1-1
Game 3 -San Jose State. The Beavers should win at home against this Mountain West team that only won three games last season. The Spartans were on the losing end of quite a few blowouts, so OSU should strike fast and hard. Verdict: W, 2-1
Game 4 -Stanford. I am not buying the Cardinal hype this season, and this is the game I think OSU has the best chance for an upset. That said, what a tough game to open Pac-12 play with, and a short rest. Verdict: L, 2-2
Game 5 – Arizona. On the road against a squad that has a good running back, a bevy of strong running backs, and a stout defense. That’s a tall order, and I don’t even think the fact that I’ll be in the stands will matter :p Verdict: L, 2-3
Game 6 – Washington State. By this point, I think the OSU secondary will be rounding into form, and can slow down the Cougars passing attack. But will that be enough for the Beavers to get one on the road? Yes, if they run the ball. Verdict: W, 3-3
Game 7 – Colorado. I like the Buffaloes’ offense a lot — and WR Nelson Spruce is a load. But their defense is still lagging. Combine that with the fact that the Beavers will be in the friendly confines of Reser… Verdict: W, 4-3
Game 8 – Utah. Emotions will be running high for this Halloween weekend matchup. Unfortunately for the Beavers, I think Utah will come out swinging and DeVonte Booker will be tough to stop. Verdict: L, 4-4
Game 9 – UCLA. This is a nice game for the Beavers to have at home. And I like their odds against a Bruins squad that could be starting a true freshman in Josh Rosen. However, Beaver Nation needs to be loud and disruptive. Verdict: W, 5-4
Game 10 – Cal. Not to be a negative Nelly, but Jared Goff and his endless stable of fast, athletic receivers will probably overwhelm the Beavers, and eventually allow the Golden Bears to run the ball. This could be OSU’s first out-of-hand game. Verdict: L, 5-5
Game 11 – Washington. They’ve owned the Beavers the past two seasons, but that should end this year — the Huskies might very well be the worst team in the conference with their losses to graduation and injuries. If they win, something went very bad for OSU. Verdict: W, 6-5
Game 12 – Oregon. Upset city? Not this year, unfortunately. At this point in the season, the Ducks will be humming along with Vernon Adams, Royce Freeman, and Co. However, I expect the Beavers to make it close this year. Verdict: L, 6-6.
So there you have it — 6-6… which I think most Beaver fans would be pretty happy with. And if the Beavers get an upset somewhere along the line, just like that, they could go 7-5. But they could easily slip up against UCLA or stumble against UW again, and go 5-7 or worse. I will say this for certain, barring injuries, I don’t see them finishing last in the North like so many pundits.
Go Beavs! (RW)