Beavers look to rebound and so does Jackson
CORVALLIS, Ore. -- While Oregon State took last Saturday's streak-ending loss to Washington hard, coach Mike Riley is encouraged with how the Beavers rebounded from their last loss.
The Beavers fell to Fresno State 16-14 in the second game of the season. They then went on a four-game winning streak and got ranked as high as No. 22.
But Washington took apart Oregon State 38-17. The national ranking suddenly disappeared and the profile of this week's game -- against No. 6 Washington State -- dimmed.
"Things were pretty quiet around here on Sunday, and I think everybody took that loss pretty hard. But I would suspect, also, that we have a pretty tough-minded group; I think they'll come back to work today and get ready for the next ballgame," Riley said.
"We responded from a similar disappointing performance earlier in the year very well," he added. "I thought we came back and put a string of pretty good football together. We took a step backward, and now we have a chance to respond again."
Safety Lawrence Turner said that Riley addressed the team Sunday, asking the players what they wanted to be -- the confident winners who were ranked No. 22 or the team that fell apart when faced with adversity.
The Beavers (5-2, 2-1) were unanimous in their response.
"We want to show that anybody can have a bad game," Turner said. "But we're never going to let that happen twice in a row."
Washington State (6-1, 3-0) has won five straight and is coming off a 24-14 victory over Stanford. The Cougars and UCLA remain the only teams undefeated in the Pac-10.
The Beavers' mind-set for this game is that it's possible that the eventual Pac-10 champion will have a loss in the conference.
"Our dream is still within our grasp," tailback Steven Jackson said.
The game will pit Washington State's conference-leading leading rush defense against OSU's top rush offense.
Conversely, Washington State tops the league in pass offense, while the Beavers lead in pass defense.
"It should be a nothing-nothing ballgame and we'll go into overtime," joked Washington State coach Bill Doba.
Riley was a bit more pragmatic.
"We're going to have to be very sound, and take good care of the football and take our opportunities," he said.
As for last week? The Beavers were bummed on Sunday, then turned their focus to the Cougars.
"This is one of those things where we're going to see what the team's made of. We were able to bounce back from our loss in Fresno, and I think we can do the same thing," Jackson said. "Hopefully, we can go on a five-game winning streak and close out the season in great form."
^JACKSON REGROUPS:@ Last week the Huskies became the first team this season to hold Steven Jackson to under 100 yards.
Jackson had 49 yards on 22 carries in Washington's 38-17 victory over Oregon State. The loss snapped OSU's four-game winning streak and quieted Heisman talk surrounding Jackson.
But the 6-foot-3, 233-pound junior from Las Vegas is still the top rusher in the Pac-10 -- and third best in the nation -- with 132.3 yards a game. His 926 yards are more than the rushing totals of five Pac-10 teams.
Sixth-ranked Washington State could give him more trouble this Saturday in Pullman. The Pac-10's top rushing defense has allowed just three touchdown runs this season -- one each to Notre Dame, Oregon and Stanford.
"I'd love to have a better game than Washington. Then again, it just let's you know that I'm human and we all do have bad games and unfortunately, it was (last) week," Jackson said. "We've got to be able to bounce back, and I think that would be great for my confidence and for our offense."
^EXTRA POINTS:@ Washington State has scored in 214 consecutive Pac-10 games, the longest streak of any team in the conference. The last time the Cougars were shutout was in 1975 -- when Oregon State beat them 7-0. Dee Andros, who passed away Wednesday, was the coach of that Beavers team. ... Washington State won the last meeting between the two teams, 34-27 in Pullman two seasons ago.
This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index
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