Oregon State's Brandin Cooks a non-factor in devastating loss

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There are empty statistics complied long after the game is in doubt, and then there is Oregon State's 69-27 debacle of a loss to Washington.

The Beavers finished with a respectable 414 yards of total offense, including 117 receiving yards from junior wide receiver Brandin Cooks, but almost all of it came after the Huskies had finished running around, past and over a team absorbing its fourth consecutive loss.

Cooks, who had 10 receptions with a 29-yard touchdown, didn't move the chains for OSU until after the midway point of the second quarter, when UW already had a 27-0 lead.

Give credit to UW cornerback Marcus Peters, the emerging redshirt sophomore who had six tackles, three pass breakups, two interceptions, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery. However, continued inadequate pass protection and another lousy performance from quarterback Sean Mannion were just as responsible for erasing the Pac-12's most productive wide receiver this season.

Sacked three times, Mannion was 20-of-41 passing for 229 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

"We obviously failed in every way," said OSU head coach Mike Riley in the only post-game media availability. "Right from the opening kickoff, the big play on the opening kickoff, to every phase in the game, there's no getting around it. We just totally failed all the parts, we're all responsible."

Riley did take time to praise Cooks, pointing to his talent, effort, and leadership.

"Unbelievable," Riley said. "He is just a wonderful kid to have around and he just continues to, I think, be a great example for never quitting."

Cooks has now caught 110 balls for 1,560 yards and 15 touchdowns, putting him in striking distance of the Pac-12 single-season records set last season by Marqise Lee of USC for receptions (118) and receiving yards (1,721). Three most scores would also give Cooks the conference mark for receiving touchdowns in a season.

Because Cooks did not speak with the media, he couldn't be asked if Saturday night was his last home game at Reser Stadium. But with the implosion OSU is enduring, who could blame Cooks for wanting to leave town before the dam breaks?

Follow Dan Greenspan on Twitter @DanGreenspan.

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