A Preview Of Nevada’s Week Three Match Against Oregon State.
The Wolf Pack will face off against Oregon State as Nevada hosts their first Power 5 opponent since 2015.
Nevada Non-Conference Preview: Oregon State
In week three, the Nevada Wolf Pack will face off against the Oregon State Beavers in Reno. It will be Nevada’s first time hosting a Power 5 opponent at Mackey Stadium since hosting the Arizona Wildcats back in 2015. Kickoff between the Beavers and Wolf Pack is set for 5pm on ESPN3.
About the Oregon State Program
The Oregon State program is looking to climb themselves out of the Pac-12 cellar with a new head coach this season. Jonathan Smith, who used to quarterback Oregon State from 1998 to 2001, is the new head man in Corvallis as he looks to inject some life in a Beavers program that has won just seven games in three seasons.
Smith has a Sisyphean task as he must work with a young roster that is lacking in talent on both sides of the ball. It was a lack of talent among other things that caused former Beavers head coach Gary Andersen to resign midway thru last season. Now its Smith’s job to try to make due of a lackluster roster and try to guide the Beavers out of the Pac-12 doldrums.
Head Coach: Jonathan Smith, First Season
2017 Record: 1-11
2017 Season Review: After Oregon State opened the season with a loss to Colorado State by a score of 58-27, the Beavers did get a win by defeating FCS opponent Portland State 35-32 in week two.
Then it was downhill from there.
In their next three games against Minnesota, Washington State and Washington (all losses), the Beavers were outscored by a count of 142-44. After a 38-10 loss to USC, Gary Andersen resigned as head coach of Oregon State and Cory Hall was named the interim head coach for the Beavers final six games of the season. The Beavers were competitive against Colorado and Stanford but ultimately lost both games as the Beavers went 0-6 in Hall’s interim tenure and finished with a 1-11 season.
Key Players Returning in 2018: TE Noah Togiai, WR Timmy Hernandez, RB Artavis Pierce, S Jalen Moore, LB Jonathan Willis.
Strengths: Hard to find any strengths on a team that won just one game in 2017 but the Beavers were okay at defending the pass. The Beavers did finish seventh in pass defense in the Pac 12, so they were not world beaters in that category, but the Beavers could be at times respectable in stopping the pass.
Weakness: Outside of an average pass defense, the Beavers are a mess everywhere else. The quarterback situation remains a mystery (will it be Jake Luton, Conor Blount or Jack Colletto) and the offense lacks returning playmakers outside of tight end Noah Togiai. The defensive line is rebuilding this season and that might be a good thing since last year’s defensive line was not any good.
Much Like Portland State, this Oregon State team is bad. The Beavers are breaking in a new coach and have so much turnover and uncertainty on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. In my opinion, given how bad the Beavers are and with this game being at home, this is a game that the Wolf Pack should win and win convincingly given their offensive prowess. That being said, this is a Wolf Pack team that lost to FCS opponent Idaho State last year, so you never know. But this is a different Wolf Pack team from last year and I feel the Nevada should take care of business against Oregon State in Reno in week three.