Check out my main story in Tuesday’s GT on the Oregon State football team’s goal to improve the pass defense. The Beavers will need to against Washington State on Saturday in Reser Stadium.

Here’s the scouting report on the Cougars. On to the notes of interest on the game:

“It is good to be home,” coach Mike Riley said. “We’ve had a couple trips in a row. We can balance that out with not going anywhere. I think that will be good for our team.”

The Beavers, who are ranked for the second straight week, are No. 14 this week, the highest spot since being No. 13 on Nov. 29, 2009. A win Saturday and the Beavers would be assured a third straight week in the rankings, the first time time that would happened since the start of the 2010 season.

The current three-game winning streak is the longest since a four-game streak in the 2009 season. The last time OSU won the first four games of a season was 2002. The longest winning streak to start a season is five, done in 1939, 1926, 1914, 1907 and 1893. The Beavers had an undefeated 5-0 campaign in 1897. 

Rutgers, Eastern Michigan, Louisiana Tech and OSU are the only FBS teams to have played only one game at home entering the weekend.

The Beavers have not allowed a score in the first quarter this season. Only Alabama, Penn State and Cincinnati have done that. OSU has allowed 136 yards of total offense in the first quarter.

OSU has allowed eight third-down conversions on 39 attempts, second best in the nation at a 20.5 percent success rate. That in turn has lead to OSU leading the nation in time of possession at 35:37, nearly 10 more minutes a game than Washington State.

The lack of red zone success (75 percent) was a big reason that led to the Beavers' downfall last season. This year, they are first in the Pac-12 and tied for 18th nationally (91 percent) at 10 of 11 chances.

The home record (54-20) this century is third in the Pac-12 behind Oregon (66-13) and USC (61-14).

OSU will celebrate the 60th birthday of mascot Benny Beaver at the game. The first Benny Beaver, Ken Austin, will be recognized.

The Beavers will wear pink socks and gloves in October in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

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