When No. 21 Washington State plays host to No. 14 Oregon State in a Pac-12 showdown Saturday it will mark the first time in 107 previous meetings the two longtime conference rivals have met while they are both ranked. In fact, it's the going into the matchup thanks to impressive 3-0 starts to the season for both teams.
The Beavers are coming off a 26-9 victory over San Diego State. They led 12-3 at halftime and used a monstrous defensive effort to preserve the win. Oregon State recorded six sacks and quarterback DJ Uiagalelei rushed for a touchdown for the third consecutive game. Uiagalelei has thrown for 630 yards and six touchdowns so far this year.
The Cougars made a statement in Week 2 by beating then-No. 19 Wisconsin at home to enter the rankings. Last week Washington State rested a majority of its starters in the second half in the 64-21 win over Northern Colorado, but star quarterback Cameron Ward still managed to finish 20 of 26 for 327 yards passing with four touchdown passes.
How to watch Oregon State vs. Washington State
Date: Saturday, Sept. 23 | Time: 7 p.m. ET
Location: Martin Stadium -- Pullman, Washington
TV: Fox | Live stream: fubo (Try for free)
Oregon State vs. Washington State: Need to know
Battle of transfer QBs: These two teams both feature star transfer quarterbacks in Uiagalelei (Clemson) and Ward (Incarnate Word) and it may come down to which one turns the ball over least. Ward has done a good job taking care of the football this season with nine touchdowns and just one interception. Uiagalelei struggled a bit in that department last week with a pair of interceptions. While that may look like an advantage for Washington State, Ward hasn't faced a defense of the Beavers' caliber yet this year.
RJ Stone Jr. is a name to watch: One of the top players on the WSU defense this season has been Stone. He has three sacks in three games and his best performance came against Wisconsin. Stone had two sacks and two forced fumbles and completely wrecked the game in the Cougars favor. He will be tasked with going up against a strong Oregon State offensive line. If Stone and the rest of the WSU front can get pressure on Uiagalelei, it could make a drastic difference because this should be an offensive shootout.
Pac-2 alliance: Oregon State and Washington State will be the only two schools remaining in what is left of the Pac-12. Both programs and their fans have rallied together since the moment Oregon and Washington announced a move to the Big Ten, while Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado and Utah will leave for the Big 12. Whatever the future holds for Oregon State and Washington State, Saturday's matchup is significant enough that it should not get lost in Week 4's top-heavy slate.
Oregon State vs. Washington State prediction, picks
Odds via SportsLine consensus
There are many intriguing ranked matchups in Week 4 and I'm here to tell you this could end up being the best of them all. Ward and Uiagalelei are both hoping to elevate their respective program to greater heights. The environment that will be on display in Pullman will be must-watch TV. It's going to be an offensive shootout and the over (58.5) is very enticing, but Oregon State is the better team in all three areas. That will be enough to win and cover on the road. Pick: Oregon State -3
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