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Opponent Q&A: Talking OSU Beavers Football

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Travis Johannes from Building the Dam answers our questions on the Beavs

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 14 Colorado at Oregon State Photo by Brian Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Earlier this week we had the chance to talk to Travis Johannes from the SB Nation community Building the Dam regarding this week’s matchup with the Huskies.

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Here’s what we learned in our Q&A:

UWDP: Jake Luton is completing over 60% of his passes and has 19/1 TD to INT ratio. Those are great numbers. How has his play been overall? How has the pass protection been for Oregon State?

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Travis Johannes: Luton has been very strong. Its been really great to see what he can do while he is fully healthy, having battled injuries the previous few seasons.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 02 Oregon State at Arizona

As far as the pass protection goes, its been really, really good. The amount of sacks from last year to this year has decreased drastically, from 48 to 16. Some of that can be attributed to better mobility from Jake, but a lot of the credit goes to the offensive line.

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UWDP: How would you asses the offensive line play so far this season in the running game? Is Jermar Jefferson still the feature back when healthy? Artavis Pierce has been carrying much of the load lately. Who will we see Friday night?

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Travis: Just like with pass protection the O-line has stepped up with improved run blocking as well. A healthy Jermar Jefferson is still the ‘feature’ back, but expect a heavy dose of Pierce as well.

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UWDP: Isaiah Hodgins has almost three-times as many catches as any other Beaver. Describe his game. Who else is a threat in the passing game?

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Travis: He has been out of this world. He is great a finding holes in the defense as well as getting up for contested balls. It seems like multiple times every game I find myself asking “How the hell did he catch that?” The rest of the passing game has been a struggle for sure. A lot of that has do do with the injury to Trevon Bradford who finally returned to action last week.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 02 Oregon State at Arizona

It will be interesting to see if Bradford plays on Friday, since he will have to sit out one of the next three games to maintain his redshirt for this season.

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UWDP: Oregon State is 103rd in scoring defense nationally and also 103rd in total defense. How has the play of the defense been in your opinion? Who has stood out? Has there been improvement?

Travis: The defense is still bad, but it’s not atrocious like it has been the past few years, so I would definitely say there has been improvement. The linebacking corps is definitely the strength at this point, and the emergence of Hamilcar Rashed Jr (12 sacks) has been one of the best stories of the year for the Beavs.

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UWDP: The Beavers are on the upswing. Is Jonathan Smith winning over the fanbase?

Travis: Definitely. I admittedly have been on the fence since they hired him, but he seems to have things going in the right direction. The fact that you can legitimately make an argument for Oregon State to make at bowl game in itself is amazing.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 05 Oregon State at UCLA

I thought this team would win 3 games tops, including Hawaii (which they lost by 3), so to be at 4 and have a path to 6 is something I did not see coming.

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UWDP: What is your prediction for Friday?

Travis: I really really really want to pick OSU. I have tried to convince myself that because it’s a Friday and the forces of PAC12AfterDark will be in effect that the Beavs will come away victorious, but I just can’t at this point. I see UW winning this one by 14 or so.

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Thanks Travis. For more on the Beavers, be sure to check out Building the Dam.