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First look at the Oregon State Beavers

An afternoon kickoff for Homecoming is a real treat

arizona-wildcats-osu-beavers-preview-pac-12-football-luton-jonathan-smith-hodgins-jefferson Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The losing streak continues but the Arizona Wildcats look to put that to a grinding halt as they host the Oregon State Beavers for Homecoming. And what a time for the Wildcats to return home for what should be a “get-right game”.

Saturday’s kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. PT and will be televised on the Pac-12 Network.

Here’s a quick look at the Beavers.

2019 Record: 3-4 (2-2 Pac-12)

Key Games:

  • Week 2 loss at Hawaii (31-28)
  • Week 5 loss vs. Stanford (31-28)
  • Week 6 win at UCLA (48-31)
  • Week 9 win at Cal (21-17)

Key Offensive Players: Jake Luton (QB), Artavis Pierce (RB), Isaiah Hodgins (WR), Blake Brandel (LT)

Key Defensive Players: Avery Roberts (LB), Hamilcar Rashed Jr. (LB), Shawn Wilson (S), Jaydon Grant (CB)

Senior quarterback Jake Luton has been having a career year. Through the first seven games, he has recorded 1,602 passing yards while completing 59 percent of his passes and maintains a 16-to-1 touchdown-to-interception ratio.

Luton’s backfield counterpart, Artavis Pierce, is also having an impressive season to date. He has logged 709 total yards and has found the end zone six times. Also, at running back is Jermar Jefferson, who has been productive when healthy.

Jefferson is questionable to play in this matchup, but if he does he will make for a one-two punch with Pierce.

Isaiah Hodgins is the name to watch within the receiving corp. The 6-foot-4, 209-pound receiver has accounted for 38 and 44 percent of the teams’ total catches and total receiving yards, respectively. He also has 10 of the Beavers’ 18 receiving touchdowns.

Defensively speaking, OSU has really struggled. The Beavers rank 95th in total defense, allowing 426.9 yards per game, and they check in at 99th in scoring defense in allowing 31.6 points per game.

With that being said, they do have a few nice pieces. Linebacker Hamilcar Rashed Jr. is third in the nation in sacks per game (1.29), logging nine in seven games. He and fellow linebacker Avery Roberts lead the team in tackles with 43 apiece.

The names to know in the secondary are safety Shawn Wilson and cornerbacks Jaydon Grant and Nahshon Wright.

Wilson one of the senior leaders of the team. He leads the secondary in tackles with 29. The return of safety David Morris may eat into some of the playing time for Wilson but watch for the balance between those two.

Sophomores Grant and Wright have been key contributors to the defense this season. They have combined for 43 tackles, two interceptions and a sack.

Oregon State has certainly improved from last year. In spite of its current 3-4 record it has been much more competitive in these games than what we saw last year.

However, the Beavers still face a tall task in stealing a victory on Homecoming weekend in Tucson. Yes, the Wildcats haven’t looked great over the last three weeks but they should still be able to take care of business in this one.