After reviewing video on Sunday of the loss to Stanford, Oregon State football coach Mike Riley said he has no regrets.
The Beavers broke down in the fourth quarter and lost the high-profile Pacific-12 Conference contest, 27-23. Saturday’s setback knocked OSU out of Rose Bowl contention.
Riley moved on and shifted his focus to face California on Saturday at home to help salvage what was once a promising season.
“Players have to get over it,” Riley said Sunday night. “We have another game to play. That’s life. You never heard me talk about the Rose Bowl. We lost the game, and we have another one coming up.”
The Beavers (7-2, 5-2) dropped to No. 15 in The Associated Press poll and No. 16 in the Bowl Championship Series standings. That means OSU is a long shot to qualify for a BCS at-large bid.
Cal (3-8, 2-6) has struggled throughout the season, but put up a good fight against Oregon for nearly a half on Saturday.
“I thought the coaches came up with a good plan and we ran the ball against Stanford better than anybody had,” Riley said. “We just didn’t execute at times. I don’t have any regrets about calls. I just wish we run some plays better.”
Riley is concerned about injuries to key players. Quarterback Cody Vaz is considered day-to-day after suffering a sprained ankle in the final seconds of the game. He’s sore and it’s doubtful he’ll practice today, Riley said.
Outside linebacker D.J. Alexander is having more tests done on his ribs. The nature of the pain that forced him out of the game after the first series isn’t known yet. He’ll be held out until there’s more information.
Offensive guard Grant Enger was helped from the field in the third quarter, but walked away after the game without help.
“All the tests are good on Grant Enger, and we’ll keep checking on that ankle,” Riley said. “We’ll just see how they all get going this week. I don’t think for any of them that it’s long term.”
Except for the game-changing fumble, Vaz played a solid game before his injury. He completed 23 of 38 for 266 yards and a touchdown.
His play has been consistent this season with a 57-percent completion percentage for 219.2 yards a game, eight touchdowns and one interception.
Mannion returned for one play in place of Vaz against Stanford. He threw an incomplete pass off the hands of tight end Connor Hamlett on fourth down.
It was Mannion’s first action since losing the starting job after a four-interception night at Washington.
Riley said he won’t force Vaz back if he can’t go because of having Mannion around. Mannion was the starter through the first four games of the season before minor knee surgery.
“We’ll see where (Vaz) is (today),” Riley said. “(Today) will say a lot. If he can’t practice for a couple days, we’ll figure something out. We feel very confident in both guys.”
As for the Stanford game, a continuing theme for the Beavers is the inability to convert offensively after the defense forces turnovers.
They just couldn’t get away with it against Stanford. The Beavers scored three points off four turnovers.
Kicker Trevor Romaine hit all three of his field goals attempts but a touchdown on any of those possessions would have made a difference.
“Any time you get in the red zone you have to score,” Vaz said. “It would have been huge if we got touchdowns instead of field goals.”
Romaine, however, developed into a steady kicker after a slow start. He had connected on 13 of 15, including the last nine, and hit three in each of the last two games.
“I’ve gotten comfortable back there and don’t let the pressure affect me and kick the ball like I know,” Romaine said. “I think it’s a PAT every kick and just kick it straight.”