NCAA FB

Beavers look to heal with a week off

Share This Story

   
 

The Oregon State Beavers have a break this week to heal up and address some issues after an uneven but interesting start to the season.

The Beavers dropped their opener to lower-division Eastern Washington, but have since reeled off four straight wins.

And they've done it nearly exclusively on the arm of quarterback Sean Mannion and the hands of his favorite target, Brandin Cooks.

''I like the way we rebounded after a rocky start,'' Mannion said. ''We've just got to go full speed ahead from here and look back at what we've done and be happy with it.''

Mannion was the Pac-12 player of the week for the second time this season following Oregon State's 44-17 victory over Colorado this past weekend.

The 6-foot-5 junior threw for 414 yards and a school-record six touchdowns over the Buffaloes. He leads the nation with an average of 403.6 yards passing a game and is on pace to throw a stunning 50 touchdown passes. He's even emerged as a fringe Heisman Trophy candidate.

''He's just amazing, I mean look at the numbers he put up,'' Cooks said. ''The guy is playing with confidence.''

Cooks caught nine of Mannion's passes for 168 yards and two touchdowns against Colorado.

Cooks leads the nation with an average of 10.4 receptions per game and ranks second with 161.4 yards per game.

Overall, the Beavers' passing offense is ranked second nationally with 420.6 yards a game.

''He is a really driven guy. He is a hard worker, he's talented and he has always been good,'' Riley said about Cooks. ''But he is stronger than ever now. He had a really great offseason and came back stronger. He runs through people, you can't arm tackle him. He can run and stop.

''Those are the two key things to being as good as he is. He can run and make a break and stop on a dime. He is a great leader and key piece of this team.''

But for as good as Mannion and Cooks are, that can't mask the struggle Oregon State is facing with its running game forever. Riley says it's a priority for the Beavers to address during the bye, especially given the level of competition in the Pac-12 this season.

The Beavers improved from a 10-yard rushing performance in the victory over San Diego State the week before to rush for 120 total yards against Colorado, but they still are only averaging 68 yards rushing a game, which ranks them 120th out of 123 among FBS-level schools.

That's uncharacteristic for a team that's been known for more than a decade for its prolific running backs, from Ken Simonton to Steven Jackson to Jacquizz Rodgers.

''We definitely want to have balance,'' Riley said. ''We are at our best when we can run and play. We are trying to get that back.''

The break will also give Oregon State a chance to heal up.

Oregon State was without top running back Storm Woods for two straight games because of a concussion. Woods was the Beavers' leading rusher with 152 yards and two touchdowns through the first three games. He had 940 yards rushing and 13 touchdowns last season.

The Beavers believe Woods and right tackle Grant Enger (knee) will return following the break. Oregon State could also see the return of offensive linemen Gavin Andrews, who has been out with mono, and Josh Mitchell, who has an ankle injury.

Right guard Roman Sapolu is most likely gone for the season after suffering a foot injury and starting linebacker Michael Doctor is still out after undergoing left foot surgery.

Following this weekend's bye, Oregon State travels to Pullman to play Washington State (3-2, 1-1 Pac-12) on Oct. 12. The Cougars visit California in Berkeley on Saturday.

Tagged: Oregon State, Oregon, Colorado, Sean Mannion, Storm Woods, Brandin Cooks

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by

College Football Pick'em on FOX


NCAA FB Videos

Sumlin annoyed by media's Manziel questions Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Kevin Sumlin responds to questions about life after Johnny Football by toying wi...

AJ Pasquale's journey back to UCLA Posted: Jun 17, 2014
UCLA football ops intern AJ Pasquale describes his own personal journey after th...

Winston issued adult civil citation Posted: Apr 30, 2014
Get the latest news surrounding Jameis Winston's recent shoplifting fiasco.

Get Inside the Locker Room with Scout.com

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Florida_Gators/browse/featuredproduct/759777/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_759000/ff_759777_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Florida Gators Gridiron 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Michigan_State_Spartans/browse/featuredproduct/760171/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_760000/ff_760171_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Michigan State Spartans Football 2012 Team Issue T-Shirt - White
    Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_USC_Trojans/browse/featuredproduct/761373/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_761000/ff_761373_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike USC Trojans Fight On My School T-Shirt - Cardinal
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/829709/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829709_xl.jpg&w=100 64.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Crimso..
    Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_LSU_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/829740/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_829000/ff_829740_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 Nike LSU Tigers Elite Force Coaches Sideline Performance Polo - Purple
    Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_Sooners/browse/featuredproduct/830935/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_830000/ff_830935_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Nike Oklahoma Sooners Legacy 91 Dri-FIT Adjustable Coaches Cap - Crimson
    adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Notre_Dame_Fighting_Irish/browse/featuredproduct/861243/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861243_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hot Sideline Jacket - Navy Blue
    adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Nebraska_Cornhuskers/browse/featuredproduct/861247/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_861000/ff_861247_xl.jpg&w=100 69.95 adidas Nebraska Cornhuskers Sideline Hot Quarter Zip Jacket - Scarlet
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapback Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1087345/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1087000/ff_1087345_xl.jpg&w=100 29.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Players Locker Room Snapba..
    Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Alabama_Crimson_Tide/browse/featuredproduct/1093431/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1093000/ff_1093431_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Nike Alabama Crimson Tide 2012 BCS National Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Ash