Mannion powers Oregon State past California, 62-14
CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) Sean Mannion passed for 325 yards and four touchdowns, and No. 15 Oregon State routed California 62-14 on Saturday night in what could be Jeff Tedford's final game as the Golden Bears' coach.
Markus Wheaton had seven catches for 99 yards for the Beavers (8-2, 6-2 Pac-12), who improved to 5-0 at Reser Stadium and will face Oregon in the Civil War next weekend. Terron Ward ran for 128 yards and two touchdowns, helping the Beavers rack up 559 yards of offense.
Isi Sofele had 104 yards rushing for the Bears (3-9, 2-7), who were hampered all season long by turnovers, penalties, missed assignments and sloppy tackling. Allan Bridgford was 18-of-31 passing for 132 yards.
Tedford, two-time conference coach of the year, has been at California since 2002, but the program has been in decline. The Bears are 14-23 in the past three seasons.
The high point of the year was back-to-back wins over UCLA and Washington State in October, but the Bears lost their final five games. They fell short of the postseason for the second time in three years.
Oregon State got off to a 6-0 start for the first time in school history, but had dropped two of three before the easy victory over the Bears. The Beavers lost 27-23 at Stanford last week.
Mannion finished 24-of-34 passing in just over three quarters of work. A sophomore who took over as starting quarterback last season as a redshirt freshman, he led the Beavers to 4-0 start before he was sidelined by a knee injury that required surgery and caused him to miss two games.
He returned against Washington and threw four interceptions in a 20-17 loss. He was on the bench by the end of that game and backup Cody Vaz started against Arizona State. But Vaz was hurt in the final seconds of the loss to Stanford.
Mannion returned to the starting role this week and, other than an interception on the first drive of the game, he looked healthy and confident against the Bears. He had all four touchdown passes in the first half, tying a school record and helping the Beavers to a 35-7 lead at the break.
California's touchdowns came on a 9-yard run by Sofele in the first quarter and a 1-yard run for Bridgford in the third.
Weather at game time was 46 degrees, cloudy and raining. Wind was 10 mph from the South.
The game aired on Pac-12 Networks. Ted Robinson had the play-by-play while Glenn Parker was the analyst. Ryan Nece was the sideline reporter.
Oregon State won the coin toss and deferred to the second half. The Beavers kicked off from the South end zone to start the game.
Oregon State captains were Jordan Poyer, Markus Wheaton, Andrew Seumalo and Anthony Watkins.
Oregon State wore all black while California wore white uniform tops with yellow pants.
Attendance for the game was 43,779.
It was announced mid-game that Oregon State's Civil War contest against Oregon on Nov. 24 will be a noon start and air on the Pac-12 Networks.
Oregon State Team Notes
The Beavers won their 11th game in the last 14 meetings against California. Oregon State has now won three consecutive games against the Golden Bears at Reser Stadium.
Oregon State head coach Mike Riley won his 80th career game while at Oregon State. He won his 54th league game during his tenure.
Oregon State's touchdown by Tyler Anderson in the first quarter pushed the Beavers over 1,000 points all-time against Cal. OSU had entered the game with 991 in 64 previous games. OSU has 1,051 all-time against the Golden Bears in 65 games.
The 35 points scored by the Beavers in the first half marked the most by OSU in a half this season and was just seven shy of the team's overall season high of 42 against BYU in the sixth game of the season.
The 35 points are also the most in a half since the Beavers scored 42 in the first half against Eastern Washington on August 31, 2006.
The 62 points is tied for the second-most ever against a league opponent. OSU scored 55 against UCLA in 1999 and 66 against Washington State in 2008.
The Beavers have now reached the 60-point plateau 18 times dating back to 1893.
Oregon State's previous high for points in a game against Cal - through 64 previous games - was 42 in a 48-42 overtime loss in 1996.
Oregon State's 559 yards of total offense is the second-highest total of the season behind 613 against Arizona. It's also tied for the 16th-best output in a single-game in school history.
Oregon State Individual Notes
Prior to the game, a statistical change was made from OSU's game against Stanford after discovering a mistake. Markus Wheaton was given an additional 9-yard reception that was incorrectly credited to Brandin Cooks.
Markus Wheaton scored his 10th touchdown of the season in the first quarter, which moved him into a tie for second in OSU single-season history. It was his 15th career score through the air, tying him for sixth.
Wheaton finished with 99 yards receiving and needs just 14 to hit 1,000 on the season. He's at 2,727 for his career, good for third in school history.
Brandin Cooks finished with 60 yards receiving, giving him 1,039 on the year. He's just the second OSU sophomore to ever surpass 1,000 yards receiving in a single season, joining Mike Hass in 2003. Cooks is now seventh with 1,039.
Sean Mannion threw for four touchdowns, putting him at 1,904 on the season. He also has 5,232 for his career, good for sole possession of sixth in school history.
Mannion's 325 yards passing is his seventh career game of 300 or more yards passing.
Mannion tied the school record for most touchdowns in a half with four in the first half.
Jordan Poyer intercepted his sixth pass of the season in the first quarter, which was the 12th of his career. That ties him for sixth in Oregon State history.
Rashad Reynolds forced his first fumble of the season in the second quarter and Jordan Poyer recovered his first on the same play.
Storm Woods' 38-yard rush in the first quarter was his longest of the season.
Storm Woods' 1-yard touchdown rush in the third quarter was his seventh rushing touchdown of the season.
Tyler Anderson's 1-yard touchdown rush in the first quarter was his third score of the season.
Micah Hatfield caught his second career touchdown pass in the second quarter.
Terron Ward's 47-yard rushing touchdown was his second-longest rush this season and his third score of the season; all three have come in the last three games.
Ward finished with 128 yards rushing, the second 100-yard game of his career and second this season.
Ward later scored a 17-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter, giving him two touchdowns in a game for the first time.
Connor Hamlett finished with six receptions and 80 yards, both career highs.
Malcolm Agnew's 9-yard touchdown reception in the fourth quarter was his first catch of the season and fourth of his career.
Lavonte Barnett recovered his first career fumble in the fourth quarter on Steven Christian's first career forced fumble.
Akeem Gonzales' fourth-quarter sack was the first of his career.
Head Coach Mike Riley
On the team's effort
"I thought it was a great reaction to losing last week's game. That was a hard fought game and probably everyone understands now that Stanford is a pretty good football team. It was disappointing for our kids, but they made a nice statement about bouncing back and being ready. They really got ready to play tonight and competed from the beginning. I was proud of our coaches and players for the preparation and they put it to work tonight."
On the running backs
"It helps to have good players that can go in and out of the game and they are both good. With Malcolm Agnew, we have a nice trio of running backs that can go in and play on the offense."
On Sean Mannion
"He had a great week of practice, prepared hard and studied a lot. He came out very aggressively. He played with confidence, was fast and went after it. Good things happened."
On the receivers
"When a number of different guys can have a good amount of catches, that means it is tougher for the defense. When the tight ends are getting a good share of passes, that is a good thing."
On the defense
"All of the defensive coaches had a really good game plan and well thought out objectives on what we needed to do to beat Cal, particularly controlling the running game. I thought it was a good plan, well executed and the players played hard and made some opportunities and big plays with the turnovers."
Quarterback Sean Mannion
On the win
"I think it was a good team win. I think we did a good job getting started. We never settled for a field goal and that was a big thing. It's something we've had to do in the past and we did a good job addressing it tonight."
On how he felt
"I felt great. It was good to back and playing and I tried to make the most of it and make some plays to help my team."
On the Cooks touchdown
"It's a little hard to be proud of that one but you know we'll take it. Whatever it takes."
Wide Receiver Markus Wheaton
On beating Oregon next week
"I can't explain how much it will mean to me. We will get back out there tomorrow and prepare for next week. Next week, it is unexplainable how much it means to me."
Cornerback Jordan Poyer
On team's best complete game this season...
"You could say that. There was a lot of really good football tonight. There were some mistakes, but you always want to limit those. As far as a complete game goes, that was the least amount of mistakes we have made all season."
On the Civil War matchup with Oregon...
"I really haven't thought about it. It's the Civil War and it was going to be a big game whether they won or lost. We are definitely excited about it and it's going to be a crazy week. We will prepare our best."
On learning the result of Oregon vs. Stanford on sideline...
"I didn't see the score up on the board, just heard the crowd cheering. I asked one of our players what happened and I found out it was 17-14 in overtime but i didn't know it was over yet. I didn't find out until later on in the game that they had lost but I try to not pay too much attention to that stuff. We will see the tape and figure out where they are vulnerable."
Running Back Terron Ward
On the possibility of overlooking Cal based on record ...
"Every week we are playing like we are 0-0, like Coach Riley says. We never overlook anyone. In the Pac-12 anyone can be beat on any given Saturday. They are a really talented team and have had some misfortunes this season, but could still beat anyone."
On extra motivation toward a hometown school like Cal...
"No, I didn't have any extra motivation. I had some friends on the team which might have given me a little, but I just saw them as another team to beat."
On family rivalry for Civil War with brother being a Duck ...
" My brother is really proud of me being a Beaver and the hard work I have put in. He is happy that I am being successful in something I love to do. He looks at me to do the best I can and that's all that matters."
California Post-Game Quotes
California Head Coach Jeff Tedford
On thoughts on the season
"Not very good. It's not something we are used to. It's obvious we have work to do. I will say this, though, about these kids; these kids are good kids and there are a lot of good young people here. Through tough times they've kept it together and I appreciate that. It's something we aren't used to and don't ever want to be used to. It's an unfortunate year for the seniors who are leaving that way. I feel for them."
On whether the team had enough tonight
"I didn't see that in their eyes. We have a lot of guys banged up. We have guys playing through things and Oregon State was hitting on all cylinders. We had way too many penalties and turnovers. I really don't believe it's a lack of effort. I don't think they ever quit. They were just outmatched tonight."
On the high number of penalties this season
"We had curtailed those over the last few weeks. Today was absolutely a situation of way too many penalties. We had some unfortunate things with some hands to the face when guys were inside. Some of them were lack of judgment in the open field or whatever. But most of them came with pass interference calls and we had a couple crucial ones of guys rushing inside and getting their hands too high. We got called for that a couple of times that really hurt us."
On the play of California quarterback Allan Bridgford
"He had some dropped balls. Again, he needs some more experience. He threw some good balls and had to throw the ball away a few times. But he kept plugging away in there and was always attending to what was going on. He made some good throws and did what he could."