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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Washington St. at Oregon St.

When/where: Saturday, 1:00 p.m, Reser Stadium, Corvallis, Oregon

TV: Pac-12 Washington

Records: WSU (2-7, 1-5 Pac-12); OSU (4-4, 1-4 Pac-12)

Last time: Oregon State defeated Washington State 52-24 in Pullman (2013)

What it means for WSU: The Cougars can’t make a bowl game but they can get some momentum heading into the offseason by playing well with new starting quarterback Luke Falk at the helm. By playing well this month, Falk can set himself up very well for what is sure to be a hotly-contested battle to become WSU’s next long-term starting quarterback. Picking up a road win in his first start would be a great way to make his case.

What it means for OSU: The Beavers can still make a bowl game but it will be a challenge. A loss Saturday would mean the Beavers need to beat at least one Top 15 team to find a sixth win, and that’s assuming a win on the road at Washington – a game in which the Beavers are likely to be the underdog. Either way, the Beavers badly need to end their current three-game losing streak or they could end the season winless since early October.

Key matchup: Jordan Villamin vs. Daquawn Brown

Oregon State’s Sean Mannion set the Pac-12 career passing record last weekend but it still hasn’t been a great season for the talented senior. The loss of ultra-talented receiver Brandin Cooks and some offensive injuries have taken away his weapons and the OSU passing game has suffered. There has been a bright spot, however, in the emergence of freshman Jordan Villamin, a deep-play threat who had 140 receiving yards and a touchdown last week against California. Daquawn Brown is WSU’s rock in the secondary and the Cougars will need a big day from the talented sophomore to keep Mannion and Villamin from consistently connecting for major yards.

Jacob Thorpe

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

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