PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Beavers came off of a strong win on Saturday against Cal Poly, and get a bye week before playing PAC-12 powerhouse Stanford the last weekend of September.
These are some key points that stand out from the Beavers’ win over the Mustangs:
1. Defense did well, but could be better
This was the Beaver best defensive performance of the season. They were able to force two turnovers, get penetration, and dominate the line of scrimmage all game long which is something that the defense has struggled with. That being said, the Beavers gave up 300 yards to the run heavy and tricky wing offense. There were times where players still seemed like they were out of position and did not stay disciplined. Again, I think this defense showed potential and the ability to make plays, but I think they could still be better.
2. Champ Flemings is no longer “under the radar”
A guy who had enough motivation already for his size, Flemings was extremely impressive against the Mustangs. Standing at 5’5 there was a lot of talk about how to use a player that is so small but, he showed why he’s a starter. Not only did Flemings finish with five receptions and 142 yards and two touchdowns, but he was recognized by NFL Hall of Famer Randy Moss for his spectacular catch.
3. No fall off in second half
So far this season, the Beavers have been a team of two halfs. No matter who they play they seem to come out in the second half of football games and really struggle on both sides of the ball. It was apparent the offense was running really basic plays and took their foot off the gas, but I thought the defense didn’t completely fall off, they had their moments of miscues but they were better than they have been.
4. BJ Baylor was impressive
As a guy who is often overlooked due to the amount of talent the Beavers have at the position, Baylor was impressive. He played with great pad level, ran extremely strong, found the creases and hit them at full speed. Baylor was able to put his talents on display and finished the game with seven carries for 101 yards and a touchdown averaging 14.4 yards a carrier in the win.
5. Special teams needs to clean up
Special teams have been something the past seasons the Beavers have held their hat on. This season is much of the same, great teamwork and great returns left and right, but they need to clean up some of the penalties they have had on big returns and continue to keep their special teams play sharp.
6. Smith and staff were smart to size big-time players
While not every big-time player sat out of the entire game, players like Artavis Pierce, Isaiah Hodgins, and a handful of defensive guys sat out the second half of the game. I thought this was a very smart move to prevent injury but another thing to keep in mind is that this seemed like this was the first game in quite some time that the Beavers dominated from start to finish so guys like that could actually rest the second half and give the back-ups some serious in game experience and not just a series.
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