Beavers will face the ‘X-Factor,’ Christian McCaffrey

Oregon State vs. Washington State

Cassidy Wood, Multimedia Contributor

The Oregon State Beavers will travel this Saturday to face the Stanford Cardinal in Palo Alto, California.  

Stanford is coming off of a big win against Arizona, where running back Christian McCaffrey saw his first start since getting injured in their 42-16 loss to Washington State.

McCaffrey is a big playmaker for Stanford in both the back and receiving positions.  He ran for a total of 174 yards against Arizona, and had 27 yards receiving.

“McCaffrey; we call him the ‘X factor’,” said junior safety Brandon Arnold.  “He is the offense.  Yes, an offense takes a whole team, but he plays a very big role in it.”

McCaffrey is also a Stanford legacy.  His father, Ed McCaffrey, played for Stanford as well, and went on to win three Super Bowl rings in his thirteen-year NFL career. 

“He is a hard, strong runner,” said senior safety Devin Chappell.  “He’s tough to bring down; and he’s experienced.”

Stopping the run game, McCaffrey in particular, will be key for the Beavers.  Stanford has a total of 1210 rushing yards on the season; McCaffrey ran for 797 of them. 

“We just have to hone in, and really focus on him,” Arnold said.  “Come with our A-game, and read our keys. They’re going to give us a look, and we have to go from there.” 

The Beavers have struggled in their Pac-12 conference games on the road, losing by an average of 35 points each game; where at home, they’ve only lost by an average of  4.5 points.

“Whatever the situation is,” said defensive coordinator Kevin Clune.  “What time it is, where it is – it shouldn’t matter.  We need to come out, ready to go.” 

Playing a consistent 60-minute ball game is still a struggle for Oregon State.  Against Washington State, the Beavers were up going into the half 24-6, but ended up losing their lead; and ultimately the game. 

“It’s like I keep saying,” said Chappell.  “We just have to focus on us.  Go out there, mentally and physically ready, and we’ll be fine.”

Stanford is currently averaging 19 points per game, where Oregon State is at 24.9.  When Stanford played UW, they lost 44-6; OSU lost 41-17.  When Stanford played Washington State, they lost 42-16 OSU had a 21-point lead, but ended up losing, 35-31.  So, this appears to be a very beatable team for the Beavers.

“We are going to come out, ready to play our game, not theirs,” said Chappell.