|No. 23 Beavers not thinking past Cal|
|Written by Admin|
|Friday, 14 November 2008 09:32|
``We don't need to be thinking about anything but the next game, and being ready for the next game, and performing well in the next game,'' coach Mike Riley said. ``We should be obsessed with the next game.''
The next game for Oregon State is Saturday against California.
Oregon State (6-3, 5-1 Pac-10) and No. 6 USC each have one conference loss. But because the Beavers defeated the then-No. 1 Trojans 27-21 on Sept. 25, they hold the tiebreaker.
After Cal, Oregon State visits Arizona before hosting Oregon in the Civil War rivalry game.
The Golden Bears (6-3, 4-2) have won their last two games in Corvallis, while Oregon State has won the last two in Berkeley, including last season's memorable upset.
nd kept them from likely reaching the top of the rankings for the first time in 56 years. No. 1 LSU had lost earlier that day.
It was the first start of Cal quarterback Kevin Riley's career, and he made a mistake that will forever follow him. He drove Cal within field-goal range in the final minute with the Bears trailing 31-28, but made an ill-advised attempt to run the ball with no time-outs. The clock ran out before the Bears could get their kicking team on the field.
``I thought he shook that off really well,'' Cal coach Jeff Tedford said. ``As a quarterback, you're going to run into those things. There are going to be times when you wish you had a play back here or there. ... I know that there was a lot riding on that play, but I think he did a good job of putting that behind him. I know he'll probably have to answer that question a lot this week, but I think that's pretty much in his past.''
This year, it's Oregon State that has a big prize in sight.
``It's a huge game for us and we know it,'' Oregon State right guard Gregg Peat said. ``We all know what's at stake, but they have had success here in the past. The upset last year, there are probably some bitter feelings about it, but it's a football game and we are going to approach it the same way.''
fter missing a game with a strained muscle in his shoulder.
If he's not ready to go, Sean Canfield, who has plenty of experience, will take his place.
Canfield lead the Beavers to a come-from-behind 27-25 victory over Arizona State and a 34-6 victory over UCLA in Pasadena last week.
``I look forward to playing this week, but it's all up to Coach Riley and how he feels, how comfortable he is with me going in with what he sees during the week. It's all on him, I'm sure his decision is probably the best, just like it's been in the past. We are behind him 100 percent,'' Moevao said.
Oregon State's best weapon has been freshman running back Jacquizz Rodgers. The 5-foot-7 Texan leads the Pac-10 and ranks 10th nationally with an average of 121 rushing yards a game. He set a conference record last week for yards rushing by a freshman in a season.
``He's a little guy, but he's hard to tackle,'' Cal linebacker Mike Mohamed said. ``If you go high on him or don't wrap up, he'll slip through and bust a big one on you. A lot of people get in trouble because you can't see him behind all of the linemen. Then, they jump out of their gap and he bursts through.''
Riley will be starting again for Cal. Neither he nor Nate Longshore has provided much consistency at quarterback for Cal.
rs, behind Jahvid Best, who averages 157.6 all-purpose yards and 95.8 yards on the ground.
Cal's defense has a league-high 17 interceptions, including three returned for touchdowns. In the last six games, the Bears also have 41 tackles for loss, 19 quarterback sacks and 19 takeaways.
Oregon State's defense has also been playing its best lately, holding opponents to 14.3 points and 260.3 yards over the last four games.