1. Can you give us a quick rundown of the Gary Andersen situation? What exactly happened there?
Gary Andersen and the school decided to "mutually part ways", and in the process releasing OSU from all the payments left on that deal (which added up to about $12.6 million). From what we've collectively read and been told, it was a combination of things that spurred Andersen to make that decision. For one, he came to OSU with the mentality of "I'm going to win here if it kills me." When the wins weren't coming despite his best efforts, turns out it may have been closer to killing him than we thought. He also had a lot of bitterness built up towards his assistants because of the lack of improvement by several position groups, which came to light in text messages revealed by John Canzano of the Oregonian. What he was doing texting that kind of info to a reporter, I really don't know. On top of that, there were some improvements to the football facility promised to Andersen that never came through. GA was having a rough time in a lot of ways. In the interim, cornerbacks coach Cory Hall has taken over as head coach
2. How has the team responded to the odd timing of their coach leaving?
As far as the players' feelings go, it's been a mixed bag. Some were really angry about Andersen leaving, others felt that the administration ran him out of town. Others still took it a little better and wished him luck in his next endeavor. They seem to mostly like Cory Hall though and genuinely played a little better in the Colorado game. But it's not translating to wins yet. But credit to Cory Hall though, he seems to be taking this situation like a champ, all things considered.
3. In your opinion, where does the Oregon State program go next?
I mean, there's not much they can do but go up from here. They only have one win this year, and the one win was against an FCS team in Portland State who is yet to win a game in 2017. Hopefully they can get another win or two before the end of the year, but it's looking like a tougher and tougher task as the year wears on. If they really want the stature of the program to increase and recruiting to improve, they need one of two things: a big name or a young name as their head coach. It's a tough task ahead for whoever they hire as the full time guy, for sure.
4. On the field this year, what's been the biggest bright spot for the Beavers?
Running back Ryan Nall is playing pretty well, all things considered. He's sixth in the league with 85.5 rushing yards per game and seven touchdowns on the ground. The full potential of "Wrecking Nall" hasn't been realized due to an offensive line that's not that bad, but they're inexperienced and injury prone. Furthermore, after starting quarterback Jake Luton went down, defenses have dialed in on Nall a bit more. I'm personally, pretty excited about freshman safety David Morris who has stepped up and has been 1st or 2nd on the team in tackles all year. While it's not great if a safety is leading the team in tackles obviously, the fact that he's doing that as a freshman gives me hope for the kind of player that he will grow into.
5. Offensively, what's the team's bread and butter? Should we expect any wrinkles?
Ryan Nall is their best offensive player, hands down. But like I said, teams know that now. In order to draw attention away from them and make up for the kind of production that will inevitably come from Stanford's offense, they need to have a good day in the pass game. Tight end Noah Togiai is the leading receiver with 21 catches, 232 yards, and one touchdown. Receiver Isaiah Hodgins is right behind him with 20 catches for 200 yards and 1 TD.
6. Oregon State's run defense has been a problem so far - how worried are you about Bryce Love?
Pretty worried, Jack. Love has been obliterating defenses the past month. Honestly, the OSU secondary is going to be pretty much completely depleted this week with seven different DBs listed as out or doubtful. For that reason, I can honestly see Stanford having the confidence to play with the passing game a bit. At the very least, if Love does play, if he can break through the second level he'll have some big gains.
7. Finally, what's your prediction for the game?
I'm not seeing a win here for Oregon State, especially if Bryce Love plays even a half. Oregon State's inability to defend that run will be death of them in this one. Stanford wins 38-14