clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

ASU vs. Oregon State: Game preview and TV schedule

The Sun Devils have not won on the road against Oregon State in nine years, will that change on Saturday?

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

No. 6 Arizona State Sun Devils (8-1, 5-1) vs. Oregon State Beavers (4-5, 1-5)

Kickoff: 8:45 p.m. MT/10:45 p.m. ET

Television: ESPN (Mark Jones, Rod Gilmore, Jessica Mendoza)

Radio: ESPN Phoenix 620 (Tim Healey, Jeff Van Raaphorst, Doug Franz)

Weather: Saturday in Corvallis, Oregon, calls for a high of 41 degrees and a low of 24 degrees. The good news for the Sun Devils is the forecast calls for clear skies and no rain. Should be in the upper 30's by the time kickoff comes.

What Arizona State is wearing: The Sun Devils will be wearing all white, with the big pitchforks on their helmets.

Series History: These games tend to come down to who is the home team. Arizona State is 20-4 all-time against Oregon State at home, on the road the Sun Devils are just 6-9-1 against the Beavers. Arizona State leads the all-time series 26-13-1, but they have not won in Corvallis in nine years.

Arizona State on offense: After facing five ranked opponents in six weeks, the Sun Devils travel up to the Northwest to face a team below .500. The Beavers have not won a football game since Oct. 4 when they beat Colorado 36-31. Of their five conference losses, three have come by double digits and that does not include a 39-32 defeat to Washington State at home last weekend.

"We have been focused on keeping our guys humbled and hungry," said ASU head coach Todd Graham. "These guys have had a lot of close and emotional wins, and I think they understand that they need to always be prepared, especially in a conference in the Pac-12 where every team can beat you."

The Oregon State defense is an experienced group and it is a unit that ranks second in the Pac-12 in total defense. The Beavers rank third in the conference in passing defense and eighth in rushing defense. The starting cornerbacks for Oregon State, senior Steven Nelson and junior Larry Scott have a combined 14 passes defended and two interceptions.

D.J. Foster went over 100 yards on the ground for the first time since the Arizona State victory over Colorado. Foster, along with freshman Demario Richard combine to form one of the most dynamic running duos in the conference.

Since 2010, Arizona State is just 11-15 when the temperature is below 70 degrees (credit to CronkiteSports' Jacob Garcia for that stat). Arizona State has a good opportunity to pound Oregon State on the ground and set up the play action pass.

Key Matchups

WR Jaelen Strong vs. CB Steven Nelson and Larry Scott: The Sun Devil offense struggled without Strong off the field last week. He was suffering from cramps, and Arizona State's vertical threat in the passing game was missing. Strong's absence reinforced just how important he is to the offense.

Strong opens up the offense takes coverage away from the other receivers in the offense, including D.J. Foster. He demands so much attention from opposing defenses that it allows other weapons to be more involved in the offense.

ASU offensive line vs. DT Dylan Winn: The Oregon State defensive tackle is one of the best interior defensive linemen in the conference. Winn has 7.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks this season and is a force on the Oregon State defensive line. Expect Oregon State to move him around the defensive line to try to gain favorable matchups

Arizona State on defense: Oregon State has not been the offensive juggernaut that the Arizona State defense has seen in recent weeks. Mike Riley's squad ranks No. 11 in the conference in scoring offense and No. 9 in total offense. The Beavers average just 108.6 rushing yards per game and 280.4 yards through the air per game.

"Just from watching his teams play, the toughness is what stands out," said Graham about Oregon State head coach Mike Riley. "They are going to play you hard, especially up front on both sides of the ball. They have had some injuries and things this year that have hurt them. They are so well-coached from a schematics stand point and they use their personal so well."

Senior quarterback Sean Mannion has struggled this season. Mannion has thrown just 10 touchdown passes, while completing 63-percent of his passes for 2,437 yards. Mannion has been sacked 28 times in nine games this season and is averaging 7.28 yards per attempt.

The Beavers use a two-back system with Storm Woods and Terron Ward receiving the bulk of the carries. Ward leads the team with 548 yards and Woods is not far behind at 466 yards and is averaging over six yards per carry.

Oregon State starts two sophomore at offensive tackle and a redshirt freshman at left guard, that is part of the reason they have allowed 28 sacks on the season. The Sun Devils have blitzed the quarterback 130 times in the past two games, however this a game where Arizona State can afford to lean on its players to win one-on-one matchups.

Key Matchups

OT Dustin Stanton and Sean Harlow vs. DE Marcus Hardison and Demetrius Cherry: Hardison has been playing like a man possessed the last few weeks and now leads Arizona State with six sacks. Cherry is back from a suspension stemming from an off-the-field issue and the two should feast on two sophomore tackles.

QB Sean Mannion vs. ASU Secondary: The best chance for Oregon State to pull off the upset is if Mannion shows is 2013 form when he threw for 37 touchdowns. Mannion is the best player on Oregon State and the senior projects to be an NFL draft pick. If Oregon State is going to win, he needs to play very well.

Final Breakdown

This is the perfect opportunity for a letdown for the Sun Devils. They are coming off one of the biggest victories in school history, the Sun Devils are playing on the road, at night, against one of the worst teams in the conference. Oregon State won their last meeting in Corvallis, 38-26 in Graham's first season.

However, Graham and his coaching staff do not let this team lose games like these. Rarely have the Sun Devils lost to a team they were not supposed to lose to under Graham. While this game may be closer than people think, Arizona State will pull out the victory.

Prediction: Arizona State 41, Oregon State 24