And then there's Oregon State. It's appropriate that the Beavers have black armbands on their uniforms. In the 1970s Oregon State won 28 games and lost 82. Once a third-string lineman was called upon to play because of a rash of injuries. He sacked an opposing quarterback, and was so out of shape that he threw up on him, too. This season the Beavers have not beaten anybody, and they've played no team that was ranked in last week's Top 20. In the Pac-10, Oregon State ranks last in scoring, passing, total offense, scoring defense, total defense and rushing defense. Two weeks ago, in the Beavers' 54-13 loss to Stanford, the Cardinals' John Elway completed 16 of 17 first-quarter passes. The Beavers have a decent running back in Tony Robinson, but let a better one go when Jarvis Redwine transferred from Corvallis to Nebraska. Today Redwine is the nation's No. 5-ranked running back. At Oregon State he rarely got to play. Which is more action than Jeff Marton, a walk-on who made the traveling squad for the Beavers' game at Texas in September, has seen. Once he got to Austin, Marton wasn't asked to suit up. He watched from the stands as Oregon State lost 35-0. The rest is murky, but somehow he spent the night in the county jail in Austin. It isn't known if he was angry over the game or celebrating his good fortune at having sat it out.
Anyway, obviously what is needed is a playoff: Oregon State, Northwestern, Vanderbilt, Mississippi, Colorado, Memphis State, TCU and East Tennessee State could be seeded. Teams such as Air Force (1-7-1), Columbia (1-7) and Cincinnati (1-8) would fill out the draw. Maybe give a wild-card berth to Division I-AA's Delaware State (1-8), which went under 105-0 last Saturday against Portland State. Losers advance. The championship game would be held in Plains, Ga.