College Football Odds, Picks, Preview for Oregon State vs. Washington State: Can Beavers Win Big? (Oct. 9)
Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images. Pictured: Chance Nolan and B.J. Baylor of the Oregon State Beavers.
- The Oregon State Beavers and Washington State Cougars meet in Saturday afternoon college football action.
- The Beavers enter this Pac-12 matchup as short favorites, but can the Cougars keep it close?
- Mike Ianniello breaks it down below and shares betting picks and predictions based on his analysis.
Oregon State vs. Washington State Odds
|Oregon State Odds||-3.5 (-115)|
|Washington State Odds||+3.5 (-105)|
|Moneyline||-180 / +155|
|Time||4 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute college football odds here.|
Just like everybody expected, the Oregon State Beavers sit atop the Pac-12 North standings in October. The Beavers have not made it to a bowl game since 2013 but are off to a 4-1 start with a pair of conference wins over USC and Washington.
Nick Rolovich has stirred up more drama than results at Washington State since replacing Mike Leach, but the Cougars are coming off a quality win at Cal last week. Wazzu is off to a 2-3 start and is 1-2 in conference play so far this season.
The Beavs have lost seven straight games against the Cougars, having not won this matchup since 2013, but this is the best team they have had since then.
Is Oregon State for real, or are they primed for an upset?
Oregon State vs. Washington State Betting Preview
Oregon State Offense
This Oregon State offense is for real and has been really good this season.
Quarterback Chance Nolan earned the starting gig after he took over for the final three games last year after Tristan Gebbia’s injury.
Colorado transfer Sam Noyer got the start in the opener against Purdue, but Nolan played in the second half and hasn’t looked back as Noyer hasn’t played another meaningful down.
Pro Football Focus has Nolan as the seventh highest-graded quarterback in the country. He has tossed nine touchdowns and is averaging 9.1 yards per attempt. Oregon State also ranks in the top 40 in Pass Success Rate this season.
As good as Nolan has been, the strength of the offense is still the running game. The Beavers come in ranked 10th in Rushing Success and ninth in Line Yards on the season.
After Jermar Jefferson finished second in the Pac-12 in rushing last year, Oregon State had big shoes to fill with his departure. But after sticking around Corvallis and biding his time, B.J. Baylor finally took over the lead role in his fifth season with the Beavers.
Through five games, Baylor leads the conference with 106.4 yards per game and his nine rushing scores are the third-most in the country. Baylor has scored multiple touchdowns in four of the five games this year.
Oregon State Defense
Oregon State’s defense has been less than stellar, however, ranking just 79th in Rushing Success Rate and a rough 123rd in Passing Success Rate Allowed. However, they still rank fifth in the Pac-12 in total defense and fourth in yards per play.
While teams have had success moving the ball, the Beavers have done a great job at limiting the damage. They rank 17th in the country at Finishing Drives and are third in the conference allowing 21.6 points per game.
The strength for this team has been eating through offensive lines like a Beaver through wood. Oregon State ranks seventh in the nation at creating Havoc and the Beavers are second in the conference with 12 sacks and 34 tackles for loss.
A pair of outside linebackers in Riley Sharp and Andrzej Hughes-Murray have been the main Havoc wreckers. Sharp has three sacks and five tackles for loss on the year.
On the backend, the Beavers’ best defensive back is corner Rejzohn Wright. The former Last Chance U star leads the conference with six passes broken up on the season.
Washington State Offense
A quarterback battle took place this offseason between last year’s starter Jayden de Laura and incoming Tennessee transfer Jarrett Guarantano.
Through five games, that battle doesn’t appear all that clearer.
Guarantano won the job out of camp and started the opener but was injured early in that game and de Laura came in. De Laura started in Weeks 2 and 3, but Guarantano started again Week 4 against Utah after de Laura suffered an injury in Week 3.
The musical chairs continued as de Laura returned last week vs Cal and he will start again this week against the Beavers.
De Laura is definitely more dynamic than Guarantano, but he is still turnover-prone. In two years, he has tallied 13 big-time throws and 11 turnover plays. He has thrown at least one interception in every start this year.
Washington State’s passing game ranks 85th in Passing Success Rate and the running game has not helped them out at all, ranking 98th in Rushing Success.
Max Borghi and Deon MacIntosh are the team’s top two leading rushers for the third straight season, but their production has dipped a lot.
After each of them averaged over six yards a carry the past two seasons, Borghi is averaging 5.3 this year and McIntosh sits at 4.8. The offensive line ranks just 83rd in Line Yards this year.
Washington State Defense
Defense has never been the calling card in Pullman and that has been no different this year. The Cougars rank 74th against the run, 119th against the pass and eighth in the Pac-12 in total defense.
The Cougars have at least looked improved over the last two weeks, holding Utah and California under 400 yards apiece. Cal managed just 273 total yards and six points.
Ron Stone Jr. has been leading the way creating Havoc, especially over the last two weeks. In the last two games, he has two sacks and four tackles for loss.
The secondary has been picked apart at times this year, but Armani Marsh has played well for them in the secondary. He is solid in coverage and a tackling machine.
Oregon State vs. Washington State Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how Oregon State and Washington State match up statistically:
Oregon State Offense vs. Washington State Defense
Washington State Offense vs. Oregon State Defense
Pace of Play / Other
Oregon State vs. Washington State Betting Pick
I am buying into the Beavers here.
On offense, Oregon State is well balanced, ranking in the top 40 in both Pass and Rush Success Rate. Their running game, in particular, will be able to find success against this Cougars defense, and the Beavers offensive line should push around the Wazzu front seven.
The biggest area of weakness for Oregon State has been against defending the pass, but de Laura has been inconsistent. The Beavers will help out their secondary by living in the Cougars’ backfield.
Oregon State will have a huge advantage with their seventh-ranked Havoc creators up front, getting into the backfield against a Washington State offensive line that ranks 111th at preventing Havoc.
When de Laura is under pressure, he makes mistakes. He has just a 31.3% competition percentage when getting pressured this year, and Oregon State leads the Pac-12 in interceptions.
Give me the Beavers at -3.5, and I would play them up to -6.