Another bad second half hit Oregon State on Saturday in a 48-14 loss to Minnesota.
The Beavers had a prime opportunity to set the tone early in the third after going into the halftime well within reach at 20-14.
Instead, the Beavers (1-2) were unable to keep drives moving and the Gophers were able to gradually grind away for the win.
The Beavers, who head to Washington State this Saturday, have been outscored 88-28 in the second half through three games.
Senior wide receiver Jordan Villamin said the Beavers can’t afford to come out flat and expect to win.
“We need to be more consistent and we need to execute and we just need some heart, because that was pretty bad in the second half,” Villamin said. “We just didn’t come out to play. We didn’t come out with any energy.
“We can’t have that. If we want to be the team that we’re supposed to be, that we’re telling ourselves that we’re supposed to be, you can’t have none of that. You come out with enthusiasm and intensity and just come out ready to play.”
The Beavers sputtered to 24 yards in the third quarter after moving the ball with decent consistency in the first two quarters.
OSU had 190 yards at the half and finished with 225.
“When we move the ball, we move it well,” quarterback Jake Luton said. “We’re just beating ourselves.”
Coach Gary Andersen was at a loss as to what the specific problem was when asked in the postgame press conference.
“We had no offense in the third quarter,” Andersen said. “We turned it over, we had a short field again for the defense. Couldn’t throw it, couldn’t run it. I couldn’t tell you what the differences were. We’ll have to look at the film.”
Andersen said the issues are not showing up in practice.
“Do I see them functionally in practice? No. I didn’t see them in camp either,” Andersen said.
“Can we practice the things we think are working and these kids practice in a good way and it’s not obviously where it needs to be in any way, shape or form on game day. At the end of the day, that’s all that matters is game day.”
Once Minnesota began to take control in the third, the game spiraled away from the Beavers.
The Gophers added two touchdowns in the fourth to cap the rout.
It was a crushing loss for a team that now has to head to Pullman to take on Washington State. Then the Beavers get Washington before traveling to USC.
It would be a difficult stretch for a team on a roll, much less a team that has been on the wrong end of two blowouts in three games.
Andersen was asked what he would say to the fans after the first three games.
“It’s a pretty tough deal for those guys, I would imagine. Absolutely not what I expected in any way, shape or form. And it’s on me, like I always say.”
Luton said the Beavers will go right back to work despite the tough loss.
“You can’t spend a lot of time thinking about how you feel about things, you’ve got to go back and look at film unbiasedly and see the things you did right and the things you did wrong and we’ve got to be better next week,” he said.