MISERY ON SENIOR DAY IN CORVALLIS
ON THE VERY first drive of the game, and just a few plays into the contest against the Huskies, there were Beaver defenders who weren't playing to the whistle. When it was the Beavs turn to hike the pigskin, the o-line was torn asunder, the receivers couldn't beat one-on-one coverage and QB Sean Mannion had no answers. Who would have thought it could get any worse?
But it did.
Much, much worse.
Try wrapping your head around this one: Oregon State gave up more than 500 rushing yards to Washington.
That's not a typo. Six Washington ballcarriers combined for 530 yards at Reser in the home finale. And UW put 692 total yards on the Beavs.
"This one really came out of the blue to me," said Riley after the loss.
He wasn't alone. Las Vegas had installed the Beavs as a 1-point favorite.
Actually, no one predicted this kind of punch to the gut. Hell, this was expected to be a tight contest between two struggling teams. The Beavs were even in some quarters thought to be in good shape, with the backup Husky QB pressed into duty.
And Washington was seeking its first Pac-12 road win of the season.
Well, none of that meant jack, not in the Beavs' penultimate game of the 2013 regular season.
By the time it was over, Oregon State (6-5) has been thoroughly beaten every which way, including loose, by a score of 69-27. And that margin was only because OSU added a few touchdowns in garbage time after both the Oregon State and UW benches had been cleared.
For an Oregon State team that started 6-1 this 2013 campaign, the possibility now staring them in the face is a 6-6 final regular season record -- and that's absolutely taking into account the 42-16 turkey the Ducks laid at Arizona on Saturday.
The Ducks' bungle was average-sized, the kind that really isn't all that rare in college football. It happens. But Oregon State's lemon against UW Saturday on Senior Day in Reser was a county fair, blue ribbon winner, weighing in at around 800 pounds.
Yes, it was really... just... that... bad.
OSU just couldn't do anything on offense, defense or special teams on Saturday, and each of their last four losses have been progressively worse.
The Ducks are reeling after their lopsided loss to 'Zona, yes, but Oregon State will come into the Civil War having hit rock bottom.
The onslaught began the moment toe met football, with UW turning a long kickoff into quick points. After a three-and-out by the Beavers, the Huskies scored with lightning efficiency again.
There followed a brief lull, where OSU and UW battled to a standstill, but Oregon State backslid again, the Huskies added a field goal and that was that.
To be down 17-0 early in the first half and have no hope is a fan's nightmare. And the monsters under the bed Saturday night in Corvallis were frightening indeed.
The Beaver defensive front seven was pushed around, with huge lanes available to Husky running back Bishop Sankey and whomever else UW put out there. Sean Mannion had little time and what time he did have, he didn't use to make good decisions as the game went on. Mannion was picked off three times, completing 20-of-41 passes for 229 yards.
Mike Riley said the Beavs weren't surprised by anything they saw, they simply came up well short in every area of the game and right from the opening kickoff.
"Obviously we're not on the right edge of any of those things," said Riley, referring to emotion, competitiveness, execution and more.
OSU now has a short week, with the Civil War the day after Thanksgiving -- Friday at 4:00 p.m. on Fox Sports 1.
But for a couple days, before the Beavs get back it on Monday, this loss is likely to sting for a while.
"We just didn't play as one," said safety Ryan Murphy.
OSU has only the Civil War left on the regular season schedule to try and correct that.
If you're looking for bright spots, you have to look really, really hard. But a good place to start would be Brandin Cooks, Terron Ward and freshman lineman Sean Harlow, who arguably showed the most fight. Cooks set the OSU program for most receiving yards in a season, finishing Saturday with 117 hashes that pushed his season total to 1,560. The all-time Pac-12/10 mark is 1,720 by Marqise Lee (2012).