Beavers Beat: OSU proud, disappointed in season
Oregon State finished 2-5, beating California and (Pac-12 "champion") Oregon, and losing tight games to Washington State, Washington, Utah and Stanford — and then losing a less-competitive game against Arizona State, 46-33, to finish the season.
The Beavers lost by a combined 25 points in the other losses, then it was essentially a 19-point loss to ASU; the Beavers scored on the final play of the game with true freshmen hooking up on a pass play, Ben Gulbranson to Zeriah Beason.
The Sun Devils, led by QB Jayden Daniels, rushed for 375 yards and six touchdowns and had 514 yards total offense. The Beavers had two bad punts (block, bad snap) that led to ASU points and a Jermar Jefferson fumble that also led to a touchdown, and other mistakes.
(The Beavers used wet weather as an excuse for some mistakes — interesting because it was a home game in an oft-rainy state and Arizona State lives and practices in sunny Arizona).
Jack Colletto, a running QB, linebacker and special teams player, scored two touchdowns.
Jefferson eclipsed 100 yards for the fifth time in six games (he missed the Utah game because of COVID-19 protocol). He had 103 yards on 24 carries, giving him 858 yards on 133 carries (6.5 yards/carry) with seven touchdowns.
Chase Nolan went 9 of 23 for 114 yards and two touchdowns. Gulbranson went 6 of 9 for 64 yards and the TD score in his first action. Receiver Tyjon Lindsey had a TD reception and had a completion to Teagan Quitoriano on a trick play for 46 yards.
• The Beavers played all seven scheduled games and were the only team not to have a schedule change because of COVID-19 protocol. UCLA also played seven games, but had Stanford replace Utah in mid-November.
Colletto said dealing with the adversity and uncertainty of the season was the toughest challenge. "It's definitely disappointing (losing), it was a long journey and long road. We definitely got experience." Going 2-5 but losing close games felt like a step forward, he added. "I feel we're close."
Said Nolan: "There are a lot of positives we can take from the season. Can't say enough about the fight. It's been a wild ride."
Players had to wake up nearly every morning to get COVID-19 tests at 6:30 a.m. So, it's a testament to them, and coaches, that very few came up positives and the Beavers could safely complete the season.
• Seniors can return for another year of competition, because of how COVID-19 torpedoed the season, and Coach Jonathan Smith said he would talk with them this week. It remains to be seen what Jefferson, a junior from Harbor City, Calif., does. He had an outstanding season and one would think Jefferson would jump to the NFL.
He has 2,923 yards rushing and 27 rushing touchdowns in three seasons.
Senior outside linebacker Hamilcar Rashed Jr. has to make the decision, too; he can return for another year. Rashed Jr., after notching 14 sacks and 22 1/2 tackles-for-loss in 2019, had no sacks and two TFLs in 2020. (The Beavers had only seven sacks in seven games).
UPDATE: Rashed wrote in an Instagram post on Tuesday that he would be leaving for the NFL.
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