2017 Prespring Rankings: No. 68 Oregon State Beavers
The 2017 prespring college football rankings, taking the first look at the Oregon State Beavers
No. 68: Oregon State Beavers
Oregon State Beavers Prespring Status
It’s not exactly a make-or-break season for Gary Andersen for his time at Oregon State, but after going 6-18 in the first two seasons, even with a two-win improvement last year, the wins have to start to come. It’s been an un-Andersen run with the defense not doing anything against the run, while the offense can’t seem to find any sort of positive consistency. However, by closing out 2016 with wins over Arizona and arch-rival Oregon by a combined score of 76-41, there’s at least something to build on this spring.
If the improvement is going to come, though, it’ll have to happen with an offense that’s losing three great offensive linemen, and a D without three of its best players in the back eight. On the plus side, almost all the key skill guys return, there’s decent depth in the backfield, and the D line should be solid. But …
Oregon State Beavers Biggest Issue
Yeah, it’s the O line. Losing three of the top six tacklers – including leading tackler Caleb Saulo at one linebacker spot – is a concern, but there are just enough good veterans coming back for the D to not take a major step back. But losing center Gavin Andrews, right guard Dustin Stanton, and left tackle Sean Harlow from the offensive front might mean a step back for the solid …
Oregon State Beavers Biggest Positive
Running game. The passing attack might not have gone anywhere, but the Beavers were able to rumble with the spread offense on the ground getting a 13-touchdown season from Ryan Nall, and 523 yards and four scores – averaging over five yards per pop – from Artavis Pierce. It wasn’t a devastating ground attack, but it should be even stronger after averaging close to 200 yards per game.
Really, Why Are The Oregon State Beavers Ranked Here?
Again, it’s Year Three under Andersen, and the Beavers are supposed to be better, more efficient, and a whole lot stronger defensively at this point. The team showed promised over the last few games, but overall this is still going to come into the season ranked near the bottom of the Pac-12 pack, mainly because the rest of the league looks so strong.