Beavers looking on bright side
CORVALLIS — For the second straight home game, the Oregon State football team is trying to come to terms with a heartbreaking loss to a Pac-12 opponent.
Two weeks ago it was a 19-14 loss to Utah. Saturday night, the Beavers squandered a 24-6 halftime lead and fell to Washington State 35-31.
Coach Gary Andersen admitted to having a rough Sunday after the loss, but was back in form for Monday's press conference.
There were positives to come out of the game for the Beavers.
Marcus McMaryion completed 23 of 39 passes for 327 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Ryan Nall returned to the lineup after missing nearly two full games and had 131 yards on 19 carries with two touchdowns, one an 89-yarder.
Artavis Pierce was also back in action and had 14 yards on three carries when giving Nall a rest.
"Getting (Nall) back there and getting him moving was great for the team," Andersen said. "You get your backs back to a full stable which was a positive.
"I thought he was solid, and AP coming back I thought was a very positive part of the day, especially against a run defense that was very good. In the first half we did some good things, in the second half we didn't."
Nall missed the Washington game to rest a recurring foot injury.
"We tried to be really careful with Ryan. It's hard when you have a foot to stay in complete game shape," Andersen said. "He does all those things that he can do to try a great job of getting in game shape."
Ugwoegbu out for first half
The Beavers will be without outside linebacker Bright Ugwoegbu for the first half of the Stanford game.
OSU was plagued by penalties against WSU, but a targeting call on Ugwoegbu might have been the toughest because he was ejected and will not be able to take the field at Stanford until the second half.
Ugwoegbu was flagged when he hit WSU quarterback Luke Falk as he started to slide at the end of a run.
"It was a proper call. Absolutely. No question about it," Andersen said.
"If there's a definition of targeting that will probably on the reel next year of targeting when it should be called, that would be it."
Andersen said losing Ugwoegbu for the two quarters is big for the Beavers.
"Especially against a team like (Stanford)," Andersen said. "So we'll adjust the same way we had some of those outside linebackers get ready and come in and play and so it's an opportunity for them to jump in and play right away. It would be good to have Bright, but we don't and that's exactly how it should be with what took place and so we'll move ourselves along."
Where was Bolden?
Receiver Victor Bolden was a big part of the Beavers' passing game in the first half against the Cougars.
Bolden caught seven passes for 109 yards and had two carries for 31 yards.
He had one carry for no gain and added 4 yards to his receiving totals when he took a pitch after a completed pass to Tim Hernandez on the final play of the game.
"They did a nice job of taking away the fly sweep. We came back in the second half and they just were going to say that's not going to work again. Which good coaches take away in that setting," Andersen said.
"I then I think our ability to be able to consistently target him in certain scenarios could be better. I know there's many concepts that are built into the throw game in those situations. We need to work hard to get the ball to where we need to get it and I think we all would have liked to have had more touches in the second half but it didn't take place and so it's something we functionally try to get that done as we move forward."
The Cardinal have struggled to get going on offense this season and are last in the conference in total offense with a 304.4 yards a game average.
Asked if Stanford is a throwback, Andersen said no.
"They reeled it in a little bit. A little more 11 personnel, a tight end, but this last week they got big. They got two extra tackles in there at times, really seven offensive linemen if you will. A couple tight ends in there," Andersen said. "It's a very functional offense, it's what they recruit to."
Christian McCaffrey is still effective and had 781 yards rushing and 207 receiving. Fellow running back Bryce Love has 339 yards on the ground.
"They will open it up with a great back back there obviously with Christian and the other young man. He's a fantastic back also. So they've got a lot of weapons back there," Andersen said.
"They'll make you defend the whole field and also make you defend a bunch of formations and that's probably one of the main ideas of coach (David) Shaw, to get the ball into their playmakers' hands, which they do a great job of year after year."