Penn State-Oregon State prediction

This is for men of a certain generation (say, the type that went to college in the early-to-mid 1990s): Remember when it was thought ironic for the college types (read: frat boys) to wear baseball hats that had funny-sounding team nicknames of college programs emblazoned on the front of the caps? Two always stood out: The South Carolina Gamecocks -- shortened to "Cocks" (huh, huh) -- and, yes, the Oregon State "Beavers." I still don't get a chuckle out of that.

I don't know what that has to do with my prediction. One thing is for sure, there should be a number of "Beavers" at Beaver Stadium tomorrow. Insert you're own joke here. As for the game, rain doesn't look like it's going to be much of a factor. I still think Penn State's huge advantage along the lines -- even with the losses of defensive end Mo Evans and defensive tackle Abe Koroma -- will screw the Beavers. Not only is Oregon State's front seven lacking in experience, the offensive line is rather green, too. I do think the Lions will have trouble with Oregon State's speed on the outside. The wide receivers will give Tony Davis and Lydell Sargeant all they can handle and the Beavers' cornerbacks can play press coverage and still go man-to-man. If Oregon State can find a way to exploit Penn State's relative weakness in the middle of their defense, this could be a back-and-forth shootout.

I'm going with the shootout, but I think Penn State prevails in part because running backs Evan Royster and Stephfon Green will be a nice compliment against a below-average defense and because quarterback Daryll Clark is sure to add a wrinkle on the ground. 

Prediction: Penn State 38, Oregon State 31.

Continue Reading