Oregon State Football Predictions

Written by Vegas Top Cappers | July 31, 2013

2013 Oregon State Football Predictions

The longest-tenured current head coach in the PAC-12, Oregon State’s Mike Riley has turned the Beavers into a regular contender for both conference and national honors in his twelve seasons in Corvallis. Riley is also the winningest coach (81-67) in Beaver history, and is coming off a 9-4 W-L mark in 2012, capped off with a hard-fought loss to Texas in the Alamo Bowl. For the 2013 season, the Beavers are expected to have one of their better teams in recent memory, and their inclusion in some preseason Top 25 polls reflects that optimism.

Oregon State heads into the upcoming season with the rare luxury of having two proven and more than capable QBs to choose from; Sean Mannion and Cody Vaz. Mannion turned heads in 2011, when as a freshman he passed for 3,328 yards and 16 TDs. A minor knee injury in Game Five of 2012 sidelined him for two games during which Vaz took over and led the team to victories. Both signal-callers are smart and skilled, giving the Beavers uncommon depth and ability. Whichever QB Riley goes with, they’ll have considerable weapons to work with, including All-American WR candidate Brandin Cooks, who amassed 1,151 yards last season, and is especially adept at picking up yardage after he latches onto a pass.

The ground game is also in good hands with Storm Woods, who flirted with a thousand-yard season despite a banged-up knee in 2012. With four starters returning along the O-line and Woods now apparently healthy, defenses will have their hands full trying to contain this multi-faceted offense.

The Beavers D-line is one of the deepest and sizable groups in the conference, with DEs Scott Crichton and Dylan Wynn specializing in getting into the opposing QBs face. Oregon State has been successful in recent seasons in mining the JUCO ranks for big interior linemen, and this season is no different, with a handful of prospects slated to make their debuts this fall.

LBs Michael Doctor and D.J. Alexander are both honors candidates, and will no doubt be playing on Sundays when their time at OSU is completed. Three starters return in the secondary, led by CB Rashad Reynolds, who picked off 3 passes last season and broke up more than a dozen others. Both safeties, Tyrequek Zimmerman and Ryan Murphy, are versatile and hard-hitting, making the secondary one of the nation’s more respected units. The Beavers also return two of the nation’s better kickers in PK Trevor Romaine and P Keith Kostol.

All in all, enthusiasm for the upcoming season is well-founded, and all the pieces are in place for at least nine or more victories, a top-tier bowl game, and an impressive national ranking. The non-conference schedule is favorable, and with a little luck in-conference, the Beavers could very well be the West Coast’s surprise team of 2013. Their annual “Civil War” with in-state and conference foes the Oregon Ducks has the potential to be one of the most-anticipated in the 116-year history of the rivalry.

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