2011 Oregon State Beavers Football Predictions and Pac-12 Futures Odds
by Dave Schwab - 7/7/2011
The Pac-10 expanded to the PAC-12 with the addition of Colorado and Utah this past offseason, so Oregon State is now in the newly formed North Division with the likes of Stanford and Oregon. The primary goal for the Beavers this season will to get back to their winning ways after posting a 5-7 season and failing to qualify for a bowl in 2010. Even more disturbing was the fact they lost four of their last five games, including a 38-0 whitewash at the hands of the Cardinal and a 37-20 loss to the in-state rival Oregon.
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The pressure will be on Head Coach Mike Riley to quickly turn things around after building a solid reputation for producing winning teams since taking over the program in 1997. The last time his team won less than eight games was back in 2005, so the patience level of the Oregon State faithful was certainly tested during last season’s losing campaign. His successful tenure with the school should keep his job safe even if this team falters again, but he certainly does not want to push his luck with back-to-back losing seasons.
The main loss from last year’s squad was running back Jacquizz Rodgers, who led the team in rushing with 1,184 yards. Fortunately, they still have quarterback Ryan Katz, wide receiver Jordan Bishop and tight end Joe Halahuni. Katz completed 60 percent of his passes last season for 2,401 yards and 17 touchdowns. Bishop averaged 16 yards per catch and Halahuni was second on the team in receptions with 30. All told, there are seven starters back on a team that averaged close to 25 points a game.
There are far bigger holes to fill on the defensive side of the ball with the departure of DE Gabe Miller and DT Stephen Paea, who helped anchor the Beavers’ front seven for the past few seasons but will now both be playing on Sundays in the NFL. There are only four starters back from last year’s team, but there are still a number of experienced players on the roster, especially in the secondary. Oregon State will rebuild its line around DE Dominic Glover and Sophomore LB Michael Doctor, who drew rave reviews from his performance this spring. Another returning starter is Brandon Hardin, who is proving to be an exciting playmaker at the cornerback position.
2011 Oregon State Beavers Football Schedule
The Beavers’ schedule starts off with a bang with a game on the road against Big Ten power Wisconsin after opening up at home against Sacramento State. A home game on Oct. 15 against BYU rounds out their nonconference schedule. Starting the last Saturday in October, Oregon State enters a brutal two-game stretch with a road game against Utah only to return home to host Stanford the following week. The Beavers close out the year in traditional form with a trip to Eugene to take on the Ducks.
2011 Oregon State BCS and Pac-12 Futures Odds
Bodog has opened the Beavers as 125/1 longshots to win the BCS Championship this season, which sounds just about right considering that other books have them listed at +2000 to win the PAC-12. They would have to be considered just the third or fourth favorite in the North Division to even get to the conference championship game, so the main focus of this team this season will be to win enough games to get back to a bowl game.
2011 Oregon State Football Predictions
The Beavers have a solid nucleus of talent on the offensive side of the ball, but they are basically starting from scratch on defense. With the exception of a probable loss to the Badgers, Oregon State should be able to build momentum with some early-season wins. It could be in for another sloppy finish, but this team gets back to the postseason with a 7-5 record and third-place finish in the division.
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