CORVALLIS, Ore. -- It was a sloppy first half, but if Oregon holds onto its lead, it will play for the national title.
Turning point: Holding a 7-6 lead, Oregon State faced a third-and-8 on Oregon's 43-yard line, but Ryan Katz's pass was tipped by Spencer Paysinger and cornerback Talmadge Jackson returned the interception 52 yards to the Beavers' 12-yard line. Though the Beavers held Oregon to just a field goal, that put the Ducks ahead, and they were in control for the rest of the second quarter.
Stat of the half: Oregon rushed for 186 yards in the first half, averaging 7.4 yards per carry.
Best player in the half: Ducks RB LaMichael James has 91 yards on 12 carries with a TD at the half.
What Oregon needs to do, What Oregon State needs to do: Oregon is a half away from playing for the national title. They need that to drive them to stay focused and keep the pressure on and not take this one for granted. As for the Beavers, their defense is getting gashed by the Ducks' running game, particularly on the edges. The Ducks have been running a standard pitch option and a few times it was hard to figure out who had the pitchman.