Weekend Media

  Thought I’d reflect on some articles regarding today’s game with the Arizona Wildcats. Here Goes.

Inside OSU-Arizona, Statesman Journal

Keys to the game: Oregon State’s inconsistent defense appears to have a big advantage today playing against a true freshman quarterback. If the Beavers can pressure Willie Tuitama, confuse him with coverages and blitzes and force a few turnovers, a fifth victory should be the result. Tuitama came out of his redshirt season last week against Oregon and did not appear overwhelmed, throwing for 182 yards and two touchdowns. But playing in a hostile environment could be a different story. OSU needs to win the takeaway battle. In victories against Washington State and California, the Beavers forced 10 turnovers. They didn’t come up with any in last week’s loss at UCLA. Arizona will look to exploit OSU’s pass defense, which ranks last in the Pac-10, allowing 321.1 yards per game. Running back Mike Bell (608 yards, three touchdowns) rushed for 158 yards against Oregon but also lost two fumbles. OSU, which has become a balanced offensive team in recent weeks, will try to pound tailback Yvenson Bernard against the ninth-ranked run defense in the Pac-10. Bernard (798 yards, 10 touchdowns) ranks 12th in the nation in rushing and is coming off a 167-yard performance against UCLA. Throwing the ball figures to be more difficult for the Beavers. Arizona leads the Pac-10 in pass defense, allowing 199.1 yards per game. OSU split end Mike Hass (58 catches, 1,047 yards, six touchdowns) leads the nation in receiving yards per game (149.6) and has gained at least 100 yards in every game except California. Quarterback Matt Moore needs to avoid mistakes. He has thrown 10 interceptions and just three touchdown passes in the past four games. A high-scoring game favors the Beavers. Arizona ranks last in the Pac-10 in scoring (19.6 ppg). OSU is seventh in scoring (31 ppg).

Failures at finish hurting Cats, Arizona Republic

Pressure is on Tuitama:, Register Guard

Arizona is smack-dab in the middle of its seventh straight nonwinning football
season and staring at an Oregon State defense that has Tuitama in its
He is scheduled to make his first collegiate start Saturday when
the Beavers and Wildcats tee it up at 1 p.m. on Reser Stadium’s artificial turf.
“The young guys, the freshman quarterbacks … they have to learn as they
go,” said OSU senior linebacker Trent Bray, who leads the Pac-10 Conference with
10 tackles a game. “We’re going to make it as hard as possible for him to learn
and put as much pressure on him as we can.”
How the 6-foot-2, 212-pound
Tuitama deals with all of that remains to be seen. But none of what happens, he
insisted, will be surprising to him.
“I know that Oregon State will be
bringing the blitz,” said Tuitama, just two weeks ago parked in what was
expected to be a redshirt season and at best a standby scenario in the case of
an Arizona quarterbacking disaster. “I know if I was Oregon State’s defensive
coordinator and a freshman was making his first start, I’d try to get the guy as
rattled as possible.”
He’s got that right.

Beaver blitz may await Tuitama, Arizona Daily Wildcat

Freshman quarterback goes up against another QB under scrutiny

While Arizona’s Willie Tuitama gets his first start, Oregon State’s Matt Moore will be trying to deflect criticism.
The two quarterbacks meet Saturday when the Beavers (4-2, 2-2) host Arizona (1-6, 0-4) at Reser Stadium.
Tuitama, a freshman, was named the starter after he nearly rallied the Wildcats to a
victory over No. 14 Oregon last Saturday. Tuitama played the final 3 1/2
quarters, completing 18-of-34 passes for 182 yards, with two touchdowns and an
interception. Arizona rallied from a 21-0 deficit, but fell 28-21.
A prep star from Stockton, Calif., Tuitama had not played until Richard Kovalcheck
threw his 11th interception of the season against Oregon. Arizona coach Mike
Stoops initially planned to redshirt the freshman this season.
“I thought I did all right,” Tuitama said of his debut. “I could have gotten us in better situations but I was worried about the play clock.”
Kovalcheck, who has thrown for 10 TDs while completing 57 percent this season, will be the backup, Stoops said.
Oregon State coach Mike Riley is familiar with Tuitama.
“I watched him practice on the practice field at St. Mary’s High in Stockton. He’s
got a good arm, a poised young man, and handles everything very well. He’s got
the talent, and now at Arizona he’s got a big opportunity, and not many guys get
that opportunity.”
Moore, who started five games as a true freshman at UCLA
a couple years ago, believes the Beavers will be able to capitalize on the
“Starting as a true freshman is hard, especially playing away,”
Moore said. “It’s going to be hard for him. I think it will be in our favor to (play against) a guy like that.”
Moore is dealing with his own issues. He has thrown for nine touchdowns this season, but also has 12 interceptions. Ten of those picks have occurred in the past four games.
Moore, taking over as starter this year from Derek Anderson, has a touchdown-to-interception ratio of three to 10 in conference play.
He makes no apologies.

Looks like the Beavers will get a decent shot at Arizona. It all depends on how well the Beaver Defense can get to Tuitama, and how well Matt Moore plays.

Lets go get em’!

Go Beavers!


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