Beavers Prep for Civil War For the Roses

Nov. 29, 2009

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THIS WEEK: No. 13/16 (AP/USA Today) Oregon State (8-3, 6-2 in Pac-10) travels to Eugene for the annual Civil War with the No. 7/6 University of Oregon Ducks (9-2, 7-1). Kickoff is 6:01 p.m. and the 113th game will air nationally over ESPN.

IT'S NEVER HAPPENED: It looks like it has, but it really hasn't. The winner of the 113th Civil War will know that it has clinched the Pac-10 title and a berth to the Rose Bowl when the clock shows 0:00. It's the first time that both teams have entered the game with the 'winner take all' scenario. The Beavers entered the 1957 season finale 6-1 in the league, while the Ducks were 5-2 - Oregon won that game 20-0 to share the title, but the Beavers knew that they were out of the Rose Bowl going in, due to a no-repeat clause - OSU played in the '57 Rose Bowl ('56 season).

BEAVERS VS. RANKED TEAMS: Oregon State has won seven of its last 13 games against nationally ranked opponents, including four on the road - at No. 24 Hawai'i in 2006 (35-32), at No. 2 California in 2007 (31-28), at No. 18 Oregon in '07 (38-31, OT) and at No. 23 California in 2009 (31-14).

TOUGH TO SHUTOUT: Oregon State has scored in 38 of its 44 quarters (86.4%) - fourth in the nation, trailing only Houston (45-48, 93.8%), Boise State (39-44, 88.6%) and Florida (39-44, 88.6%). For the game, the Beavers haven't been shutout since Sept. 28, 2002 at USC (22-0) - a streak of 107 consecutive games scoring and 158 of 159 games dating back to a 1997 shutout again by USC (23-0).

SPEAKING OF SHUTOUTS: They did it to each other in 1983. 'They' being the Ducks and Beavers. On Nov. 19, 1983 UO and OSU played to a scoreless tie at Autzen Stadium, the last FBS (formerly D-1) game that ended in a tie. Among the many 'highlights' were four missed field goals, 11 fumbles and five interceptions.

IT'S BEEN A PRETTY GOOD DECADE: Oregon State is 80-44 (65%) during this decade, compared to 29-81-1 (26%) during the 1990s and 22-85-4 (21%) in the 1980s. The 80 victories rank as the third most in the conference during the decade. Here is how they stack up as of Nov. 23: USC 101-24, Oregon 86-37, OSU 80-44, California 71-50, UCLA 66-57, Arizona State 65-58, Washington State 57-63, Arizona 48-68, Stanford 47-68 and Washington 48-71. A victory Thursday would be Oregon State's 500th in the history of the program.

NORTHWEST TITLE: The winner of the Civil War will be able to stake the claim of the Pacific Northwest title by virtue of its victories over Washington and Washington State. OSU won all three games in 2007 and in 2004.

THE SERIES: The Civil War is the seventh-most contested rivalry in the nation and dates back to 1894. Oregon leads overall in the match-up 56-47-10. Last season Oregon won 65-38 in Corvallis. OSU has played in just five overtime games in the program's history, twice against the Ducks, winning in 2007 in Eugene 38-31 and in double overtime in 1998 in Corvallis 44-41. Oregon State is the last Pac-10 team to win at Autzen Stadium, winning that 2007 game.

OLD 'FRIENDS': With 113 games, the Civil War's is not the most contested rivalry in the nation, but it's close. Here is a closer look (games through the end of this season); Minnesota vs. Wisconsin (119), Kansas vs. Missouri (118), Nebraska vs. Kansas (116), Texas vs. Texas A&M (116), Miami (OH) vs. Cincinnati (114), North Carolina vs. Virginia (114) and Auburn vs. Georgia (113).

THE KEY IS BALANCE: Oregon State enters the final regular season game with 395 pass attempts and 388 rush attempts - a difference of seven. The seven differential is the smallest in the Pac-10 - UCLA (12), Washington State (18), Washington (22), Arizona (32), Arizona State (36), USC (73), Cal (89), Oregon (168) and Stanford (203).

NEVER TOO EARLY...: To look ahead to next year. Yes, there is a lot of football to play yet in 2009, but looking ahead to 2010 season the Beavers will have among the most experienced teams in the nation. Counting the H-Back (essentially a 12th starter on offense) the Beavers figure to return nine starters on offense, nine starters on defense and the kicker and punter - a total of 20 returning starters. The Beaver losses are significant though, especially at QB where they lose what amounts to two starters in Sean Canfield and Lyle Moevao. Other graduating starters are Damola Adeniji (SE), Gregg Peat (RG), Keaton Kristick (LB) and Tim Clark (CB). A look around the league (as of 11/20) on the two-deeps the Beavers have the most returning starters (includes PK & P) for '10, followed by Oregon (18), Washington (17), Washington State (16), Stanford (15), UCLA (14), USC (14), California (14), Arizona (13) and Arizona State (9).

IT'S ANOTHER WINNING SEASON: Oregon State has clinched a winning season, marking the fourth consecutive year. It's the longest streak for the Beavers since a five-year run between 1966-70. The team has a chance to be the third in OSU history to reach 10-plus victories for a year, joining the 2000 team (11 wins) and 2006 (10).

ROAD RECORD: Oregon State is the most successful team in the Pac-10 Conference in away games the last two seasons. The Beavers have won eight of their last 10 league road games, losing only a 42-36 decision to then-No. 4 USC this season and 36-28 in the 2008 season opener at Stanford. Some of the active road streaks for the Beavers include a 5-game streak at Cal, and 4-game streaks at Arizona and Washington.

56-7: That's the record of Oregon State when it leads after three quarters with Mike Riley as head coach. Since the start of the 2004 season it is 40-3.

THIRD DOWN - NO PROBLEM: The Beavers enter the game first in the Pac-10 and ninth in the nation for third-down percentage conversion at 48.4 percent (74-153) - a school record pace. The team is also first in the conference and tied for first in the nation (Toledo) for fourth-down percentage conversion at 80 percent (8-10).

IN THE (RED) ZONE: The Beavers and Oregon are tied for first in the nation with Arkansas and Northern Illinois for redzone scoring percentage at 96 percent. OSU has scored on 48 of 50 attempts, 37 via touchdowns and 11 via field goals. The Beavers have scored touchdowns on 15 of their last 16 red-zone trips. See more details on redzone scoring in the statistics portion of the notes.

STOPPING THE RUN: The Beavers enter this week leading the Pac-10 and rank 13th in the nation for rush defense allowing 98.5 yards per game - one of 13 teams to allow less than 100 yards per outing.

AIR POWER: Among conference games only, Oregon State leads the Pac-10 for passing offense at 284.6 yards per game and pass efficiency at 149.1 - nearly all is credited to senior quarterback Sean Canfield.

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