#43 Oregon State Football 2014 Preview

Oregon State Beavers

Overall Rank: #43
#8 Pac-12

Oregon State Team Page#43 Oregon State Football 2014 PreviewBuy Oregon State Football Tickets

Oregon State has gone to back-to-back bowls in the past two seasons after a two-year absence in the postseason. Last year the Beavers won a bowl game for the first time since 2008 and Mike Riley will look to build on that success. He has a new offensive coordinator in John Garrett after Danny Langsdorf left for a job in the NFL and he will be tasked with leading an offensive with a number of key returnees. With just eight starters gone from last season, expectations should be high in Corvallis.

2013 Record: (7-6, 4-5)
2013 Bowl: Hawai’i Bowl vs. Boise State (W 38-23)
Coach: Mike Riley (88-73 at Oregon State, 88-73 Overall)
Offensive Coordinator: John Garrett
Defensive Coordinator: Mike Banker

Returning Leaders:
Rushing: Terron Ward, RB, 521 yards
Passing: Sean Mannion, QB, 4,662 yards
Receiving: Richard Mullaney, WR, 788 yards
Tackles: Tyrequek Zimmerman, S, 104
Sacks: D.J. Alexander, LB, 2; Michael Doctor, LB, 2
Interceptions: Steven Nelson, CB, 6

Other Key Returnees: RB Storm Woods, TE Connor Hamlett, TE Caleb Smith, C Isaac Seumalo, RT Sean Harlow, DE Dylan Wynn, LB Rommel Maggeo, LB Jabral Johnson, S Ryan Murphy, K Trevor Romaine, P Keith Kostol

Key Losses: WR Brandin Cooks, DE Scott Crichton, CB Rashaad Reynolds, LT Michael Philipp, LG Josh Andrews, RG Grant Enger, DT Mana Rosa, DT John Braun

Oregon State has Sean Mannion back and he will lead the Beavers this season. The senior is close to setting a number of Oregon State passing records and should have a big senior year. He set a Pac-12 record with his 4,662 passing yards last season and is second nationally in career passing yards among returning players. The Maxwell Award Watch List Player will lose leading receiver Brandin Cooks, who left early for the NFL, but returns the next five leading pass catchers behind him. Richard Mullaney is back for his junior year after catching 52 passes for 788 yards and three touchdowns last season. Joining him will be a pair of tight ends, Connor Hamlett, a Mackey Award Watch List member, and Caleb Smith. Hamlett caught 40 passes for 364 yards and five touchdowns, while Smith caught 25 passes for 343 yards and four touchdowns. Mannion will be joined by Terron Ward and Storm Woods in the backfield. Ward was last season’s leading rusher, running for 520 yards to go along with 280 receiving yards, while Woods ran for 477 yards and added another 440 in the receiving game. The Beavers also return all three of their linebackers and three of their four defensive backs, five of who had over 60 tackles last season. Safety Ryan Murphy had 8 tackles for a loss last season, while Steven Nelson led the team in interceptions, 6, pass breakups, 8, and pass deflections, 14. The three linebackers, D.J. Alexander, Jabral Johnson and Rommel Maggeo, combined for 174 tackles, while safety Tyrequek Zimmerman led the tam with 104 tackles.

The offensive and defensive lines look to be the weaknesses for the Beavers. Oregon State returns just two starters on their offensive line and just one on defense. Isaac Seumalo will anchor the offensive line from his center position after earning second team All-Pac-12 honors last season. The former Under Armour High School All-American was named to the Rimington Trophy Watch List and is poised for a big junior season. He will be joined by Sean Harlow, who started nine games at right tackle as a freshman. Defensively, Dylan Wynn is the lone starter back. Wynn, the most experienced returning starter for the Beavers, having started 32 time so far in his career, was the fourth leading tackler last season, coming up with 67 stops. The Beavers will be looking for other players to step up. Offensively, Josh Mitchell and Grant Bays look set to occupy the guard spots, while players like Jashwha James, Siale Hautau and Brandon Bennett-Jackson could step up defensively.

The Bottom Line:
Sean Mannion will be key for the Beavers. The senior is going to lead the offense and will need to put up big numbers again for the Beavers to have success. He has quality skill players around him and the defense is solid in both the secondary and the linebackers, but the lines are going to decide a lot for the Beavers. If the offensive line can step up and provide the quality protection and the defensive line can get pressure on the quarterback, the Beavers should have some success. Isaac Seumalo and Dylan Wynn are probably the two most important players on this year’s team, outside of Mannion.

Projected Bowl: Royal Purple Bowl

2013 Team Stats:
Rushing Offense: 94.4 (115th in nation, 11th in conference)
Passing Offense: 372.6 (3, 1)
Total Offense: 467.0 (26, 3)
Scoring Offense: 34.8 (29, 5)
Rushing Defense: 190.3 (88, 11)
Pass Defense: 246.3 (84, 7)
Total Defense: 436.6 (100, 9)
Scoring Defense: 31.4 (90, 9)
Turnover Margin: 0.2 (42, 7)
Sacks: 1.92 (66, 8)
Sacks Allowed: 1.92 (57, 6)

Madness 2015 NFL Draft Rankings:
#66 Sean Mannion
#75 Steven Nelson


See All College Sports Madness Top 104 Football Previews