21.Oct.2009 It's Official: The Beavers have a Chance

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

After watching the USC/Notre Dame game, I put the Beavers chances of victory at sub 1%. I just felt the game would be a sure loss and anything to the contrary a sure miracle. Over the past few days I’ve read a lot of fan feedback, both on this blog and other forums in Beaverland, yet none of them quite convinced me that we have a shot in the game. Mainly because I believe at this level of competition a great part of the game is mental, and I think the Beavs go into that stadium down in LA knowing the history (21 straight losses@USC) and with a roster loaded with USC rejects. The latter point can’t be underestimated. Lance Mitchell, Sean Canfield, Ryan McCants, et al.–all LA area guys who were overlooked by USC and had to “settle” for the Beavers. This isn’t a slight at the aforementioned players as most PAC-10 rosters are riddled with USC rejects, but I think it’s something that stays in the back of these players’ minds for a long time. Considering the Trojans are the pinnacle of west coast football, the thought that “I was not good enough to earn a USC scholarship” must be on the mind of any opponent playing at USC and one that must be overcome.

So why do I now give the Beavers a 22% chance of winning this game? Well, a little statistical analysis, first of all, but mainly because I think the Beavers have a psychological advantage in two areas, and these advantages are so strong that they trump (a) who the Trojans are and (b) who the Beavers are not.

1. A national ranking. You can make the argument that the Beavs had a chance to do this very thing versus Cincinnati and showed little mettle. Touche. But I think the benching of #28, familiarity with the opponent, a pro-style offense in USC, and general team improvement make this opportunity more palpable. I just see the mindset of the Beavers being one of desperation and ambition mixed with a quiet confidence. And the Trojans mindset right now is one of trying to psych themselves up with a “revenge” angle that lacks conviction while feeling the pressure to maintain their ranking. And lastly, while you’d never hear a Trojan admit it, after the events of the past three years there has to be a quiet, unspoken fear of the looming elephant in the room.

2. A big game by Quiz equals a legitimate Heisman run. The significance of such a (potential) run cannot be understated. It’s a cause the entire OL can get behind. It’s a cause that can make the OL give extra effort, make the extra block, and drive just a little harder off the line. Maybe the WRs and TE block a little harder, too. This is huge because the glaring mismatch on Saturday is going to be the Beaver OL versus the Trojan DL. Anything that can bridge the gap is worth noting, and personally I believe that having a potential Heisman contender in waiting does more than bridge the gap.

Do either of these two points come to fruition and have any effect on Saturday’s game? Clearly I don’t know. But I at least have good reason now to believe that the Beavers will be as jacked as possible for the occasion, have tangible motivation to put forth their best effort, and possibly even win–a feat that appeared to have lottery odds earlier this week.

On a final note, this line by Gregg Peat sums it up nicely.

“It’s an opportunity for them to get back at us, and it’s an opportunity for us to get back on the map, too,” OSU guard Gregg Peat said. “We’re just as fired up as they are.”

Jump to Bottom
  • Beavgirl says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    “the Beavers will be as jacked as possible for the occasion, have tangible motivation to put forth their best effort, and possibly even win.”

    Angry did you see that drive in the first quarter? USC passed it all the way to the end-zone incredibly quickly and efficiently. No matter how “jacked” the beavs get I just don’t think we’ve got the defense to keep up with those passes.

    -beavgirl :E

    • angrybeaver says:
      VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

      That’s what I thought, too, Beavgirl, but imagine you’re blocking for a Heisman runner. That’s huge motivation that could trickle throughout the team and give the Beavs superhuman powers for a brief period of time, much like people who lift cars when their ugly, genetic-mutant of a child is trapped under a tire. 🙂

      -angry

  • Beavgirl says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    Sure hope you’re right about that, angry–even the mutant part haha.

    • angrybeaver says:
      VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

      Beavgirl, I’m always wrong, which is a good thing, because I still like USC in this game despite having a reason for optimism.

      That being said, I do think being on the precipice of a ranking and heisman contender will do wonders for motivation. Expect the Beavs to play very hard. You’ll know early if they can win the game. If they can stop a few USC 3rd down conversions and run a bit that’s when you can start getting really excited.

  • bill hetland says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    Angry – put the beavs at 30-35 pct… obviously noone knows… but, i have this sneaking feeling… and i put a few hundred taking the spread… they are retarded if they think the beavs lose by 21… i am thinking more like 10, unless they get a cheap one at the end when we are in desperation mode….I think this will be a game, and i think the duckies may lose too… how bout those apples… go beavs..

  • JuneauJim says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    You’ve been drinking the SoCal Kool-Aid they sell in Santa Barbara my friend.

    Do you think the Beaver’s chances are slim because SC “rolled” over WSU at home 27-6? Or was it because they beat Cal team that managed to score 6 points in two weeks and the first 3 were a gift?! Or is the 3 point win at Ohio State….the same Ohio State that couldn’t beat Purdue? Or is it because they hung in there with Washington until they lost? Where are the quality wins? Ohio State and ND? Two teams that are consistently overrated.

    This clearly is not the USC of previous years.

    Beavers by 11!

  • bill hetland says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    Okay – I am onboard too… I think this is a game… I just did not want to sound over confident like the duckies always do…. I can not wait, and i think we may take them down… If the offensive line gives canfield time, and he plays like the stanford game… we can beat them…. we may have as good a chance as oregon against the huskies…. go beavs..

    Of course the rodgers’eessss are key to this..

  • Diggs says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    I like the 2 main points; nice writeup, Angry.

    Nervous, but hopefully i’m saying upset, just because. Either way, just for fun, that 22% should raise 1% for every fan going with the beavs. 😉

  • Beavocalypse says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    Nice write up Angry. I think 25% would have been the best percentage. 🙂

    And I’m glad you covered the angle with a possible Heisman runner. I have a feeling the boys of the OL are under INTENSE pressure because they are the ones that are still lagging, in my opinion.

    We will see…but I think the thing about USC rejects is wrong because Riley tends to go after guys that WANT to be at OSU (even if they aren’t always the guys we fans would want) and to guys like the Rodgers bros, it doesn’t matter a bit because they are Texas boys and they appreciate the chance OSU gave them. I see the two of them coming out and playing like crazy people.

  • Beavocalypse says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    Another thing, I was thinking maybe you could examine the play of some guys that have been under the radar on this team.

    For example, Aaron Nichols. Even though this guy is making 1-2 catches in games this season, he usually makes them count for something. He’s been an interesting guy to watch. Or maybe I’m the only one noticing that.

    Good job as usual man.

    • angrybeaver says:
      VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
      Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

      No, funny you mention that because there were several times where I wrote that Nichols should see the field more only to delete it because it wasn’t really relevant to the article I was writing. So, that’s a good point–to write up some guys who deserve attention. Hardin is the big one for me. You could say I have a hard-on for Hardin, if you’re as crude and politically incorrect as I am. Also, Taylor Henry intrigues me. The guy has played maybe 2 plays all year and has 1 of our 4 sacks. Looked very fast on the edge. But yeah, good idea.

      • Beavocalypse says:
        VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
        Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

        DUDE…don’t even get me started on Hardin. I’ve agreed every time you’ve said he deserves more time on the field. However, I haven’t been disappointed by the DB position as much as I was with #28. Now he’s riding the pine we have a more serviceable secondary.

        Another guy I want to point out for your article of guys that deserve more field time is Will Darkins, the recently converted Linebacker who plays Fullback for us. I have seen highlights of three different occasions where #33 has made a clutch block to pave the way for a touchdown. I personally wish we’d use fullback more often.

  • angrybeaver says:
    VA:F [1.9.22_1171]
    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

    I’m nervous, boys, and just bought some juice in anticipation of drowning in gin tonight.

  • Recruiting Updates

  • Categories

  • Archives