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Previewing the Oregon State offense

Running back Ryan Nall leads the way.

NCAA Football: Arizona at Oregon State Cole Elsasser-USA TODAY Sports

Thanks to a heavy rotation at the quarterback position, the Beavers have had little consistency on offense this year. Their strongest suit is the rushing attack led by Ryan Nall, but he has also missed time this year due to injury. The Beavers are coming off a nice offensive week last week against Arizona where they managed 42 points at home.

The leader:

Yet another team that has co-offensive coordinators. First up is Kevin McGiven who is in his first year as co-coordinator and also coaches quarterbacks for the Beavers. In the past he’s spent a lot of time in the Big Sky including a stint with Dakota Prukop at Montana State. The other co-coordinator is T.J. Woods who also works with the offensive line and the running game. Together the two create a spread offense look that uses lots of motion to get the defense on the run. The Beavers do a good job at splitting up the run and pass.


Through the year, the Beavers are averaging just 25.5 points per game. The running game is their best way of piling up the yards. The rushing attack averages 180.9 yards per game and 180.5 yards per game come through the air. The Beavers are having some problems holding on to the ball, they’ve fumbled 15 times on the year with seven losses as well as having thrown seven interceptions.

Oregon State has been an awful team on finding a way to convert the play when they need to. On 160 third down attempts (which is quite high) they’ve converted only 57 times for a 36% conversion percentage. Fourth downs have been worse as they’ve converted just three for 15 times. They’ve made it to the redzone on 35 occasions, scoring touchdowns on 21 of those trips and making field goals on another seven of those trips.

In a game that was much closer than it needed to be last year, the Beavers used the rushing attack to keep it close. Ryan Nall had 174 yards on 19 carries (9.2) average and one touchdown to lead the way. Marcus McMaryion started at quarterback and threw for 154 yards and one pick on 11 for 21 passing.

Three players to watch:

Ryan Nall, #34, sophomore running back, 6' 2", 234 lbs.

Nall missed two games earlier this year, but when healthy he’s been so tough to bring down. He leads the team with 813 yards and nine touchdowns. What’s most impressive to me however is his average per carry, which is hovering right at 6.9. His three best games came against California, Washington State and Arizona.

Marcus McMaryion, #3, sophomore quarterback, 6' 1", 204 lbs.

The rotating quarterback door has led to McMaryion starting the last five games. As mentioned, he was the one who played in the Civil War last season. He’s had an okay year with nine touchdowns to five interceptions but he’s coming off the game of his career against Arizona with five touchdown.

Victor Bolden #6, senior wide receiver, 5’ 9”, 183 lbs.

With Seth Collins still sidelined with injury, Bolden is the one to watch in this receiving core. He only has two touchdowns on the year, but his still managing about 50 yards receiving per game.