9 p.m. Saturday • Reser Stadium TV: Fox Sports One • Radio: 100.3-FM
About the Beavers (1-1)
The Gophers (1-0) and Beavers meet for the second consecutive year in a Rodent Bowl of sorts, with Minnesota edging Oregon State 30-23 in last year’s opener at TCF Bank Stadium. This time it’s in Corvallis, where wildfires in the region have the Pac-12 monitoring air quality and considering possible game-time changes.
Oregon State already has two games under its belt — it was allowed to play Aug. 26 because its opponent, Colorado State, has Hawaii on its schedule, and teams that play the Rainbow Warriors are given extra time for travel considerations. In that opener, the Beavers fell 58-27 at Fort Collins, Colo., after the Rams scored 27 points off turnovers. Saturday, Oregon State rallied to beat FCS-level Portland State 35-32 on Jake Luton’s 17-yard TD pass to Isaiah Hodgins with 1:08 left.
Who to watch: Jake Luton, QB
Luton, who earned JUCO All-America honors at Ventura (Calif.) College last year and began his career at Idaho, has been hit and miss. The 6-7, 234-pound QB went 27-for-47 for 304 yards against Colorado State, but his three interceptions turned the game for the Rams. Against Portland State he was more efficient, 18-for-25 for 235 yards.
“It was a little bit ugly a times, a little bit sloppy, but we’ll get that tightened up,” Luton said.
From the coach: Gary Andersen
Gophers fans, if not the current coaching regime, should be familiar with Andersen, who coached Wisconsin to a 9-4 record in 2013 and a 10-3 mark in 2014 before leaving for Oregon State when longtime Beavers coach Mike Riley took the Nebraska job. Andersen is in the third year of a rebuilding job, and he is coming off 2-10 and 4-8 seasons.
His most pressing concern is the Beavers defense, which gave up 334 passing yards to Colorado State and 291 rushing to Portland State. “We have a lot of work to do,” he said. “When you sit back and you study and evaluate that defensive tape, we’re not that far away. We just gotta take care of some business.”