SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — DJ Uiagalelei got off to a fast start for his new team, throwing three touchdown passes and running for two more to lead No. 18 Oregon State to a 42-17 victory over San Jose State on Sunday.
The former five-star recruit who went from a promising prospect to the bench during his three years at Clemson looked very comfortable in his debut for the Beavers.
He completed all three passes on his opening drive and capped it with a 1-yard TD run. He added a 14-yard TD pass to Jack Velling on his third drive and ran it in again from the 1 on the next possession to give Oregon State a 21-3 lead over the Spartans (0-2).
He then added two deep strikes in the second half, a 31-yarder to Jeremiah Noga in the third quarter and a 28-yarder to Anthony Gould in the fourth quarter to match his career high with five combined touchdowns.
Uiagalelei finished 20 for 25 for 239 yards to help the Beavers start the season on the right note as they try to build on last year’s 10-win campaign under coach Jonathan Smith.
Damien Martinez added 145 yards rushing for the Beavers.
The Spartans followed last week’s 56-28 loss at No. 6 Southern California that offered some promise offensively with a rough performance in their home debut.
San Jose State didn’t reach the end zone until scoring two TDs in the fourth quarter after the game was already out of reach.
The Spartans fell to 1-31 against ranked opponents since the start of the 2001 season with the only win in that span coming in 2013 against Fresno State.
Oregon State: The Beavers earned their second top 20 preseason ranking in more than a half century and looked worthy of it in the opener with a strong performance on both sides of the ball. But the real test won’t come for a few more weeks when the Pac-12 season starts.
San Jose State: The Spartans were supposed to be the sharper team after opening the season a week early. But they burned three timeouts less than 21 minutes into the game and committed a false start on a potential fourth-down try. They will look forward to the schedule getting a little easier the rest of the way after the back-to-back losses to ranked Pac-12 teams.
This was the seventh meeting between the schools but it could end up being a more regular occurrence if the Beavers end up joining the Mountain West. Oregon State’s conference status is in flux after 10 of the 12 Pac-12 schools have committed to leave for new conferences before next season. Joining the Mountain West appears to be the most likely option.
Oregon State: Hosts UC Davis on Saturday.
San Jose State: Hosts Cal Poly on Saturday night.