The Colorado State Rams open their new stadium against the Oregon State Beavers in Week Zero. This game was originally scheduled for week 4, but because of the Rams conference schedule that left them without a bye, the Beavers were nice enough to agree to move the game to week zero. This is part of a two-game series, with the Rams playing at Oregon State in 2020.
The Beavers are just starting to get their rebuild done after 3 losing seasons in a row. Their last winning season was 2013, where they went 7-6 with a Hawaii Bowl win. Gary Andersen took over for Mike Riley. Andersen might sound familiar to Rams fans, he used to be the Utah State coach.
This match-up should provide a good test for the Rams. Oregon State is a lower level Power 5 team, who the Rams should compete with and potentially walk away with a win from. This will be a key game to see where the Rams are under Year 3 of Mike Bobo
Location: Corvallis, Oregon
Mascot: Benny Beaver
Coach: Gary Andersen, former Utah State Aggies head coach
Conference: Pac-12 (North Division)
2016 Record: 4-8, 3-6 Conference
Ryan Nall, RB, Pac-12 Honorable Mention
Came to Oregon State as a Tight End/H-Back. 6’2” 240lbs. Was shifted to running back during the 2015 season due to injuries. Finished the 2016 season with 147 carries for 951 yards and 13 touchdowns. Also added 22 catches for 214 yards and 2 touchdowns out of the backfield.
Manase Hungalu, Inside Linebacker
One of the stars of the Oregon State defense. Finished the 2016 season with 83 total tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 5 passes defended, and 3 fumble recoveries. Hungalu is a sideline to sideline type of linebacker. He can cover and he can run up and make the stop.
Oregon State’s passing game was absolutely horrible last year. Finished the season with 13 touchdowns and a 110.2 passer rating. That should improve this year. Many have anointed Jake Luton, a JUCO transfer, to be their starting QB. Their defense improve last year, they cut their passing TDs given up almost in half. The Beavers will provide a good test for the Rams to see where they are.
The Rams offense continues to roll as it did at the end of the year last year. Both the run and pass games will compliment the other. The defense will improve somewhat and won’t let this game evolve into a shootout. The Rams will use this game to bleed the new players and get ready for the Rocky Mountain Showdown the following week.
Colorado State 35, Oregon State 21