Tuesday, August 9, 2011
While you were on vacation ... Oregon State
By ESPN.com staff
The fifth of 12 quick updates on offseason Pac-12 goings on.
Oregon State in a sentence
The big issue
- The Beavers have critical questions -- both lines, injury issues, etc. -- that make it difficult to say whether they will end their bowl-less run at just one season.
Quick hit news
- While a 100 percent healthy return of receiver James Rodgers would pack a positive punch, it's really all about the lines: The Beavers must fill big holes on the their defensive line, while the offensive line, which welcomes back four starters, needs to improve significantly.
- The early camp news on Rodgers, who underwent two surgical procedures on his right knee, is mostly good. He's practicing in a limited fashion. When he could return to full-contact work and just how much he'll look like his old self when he does remains to be seen.
- Others players who missed spring practices due to injury include quarterback Ryan Katz (wrist), receiver Jordan Bishop (ankle), tight end Joe Halahuni (shoulder) and running back Jordan Jenkins (shoulder). Katz, Bishop and Jenkins were practicing at full speed, while Halahuni is expected to miss at least the first two games, including the visit to Wisconsin.
- The status of starting DT Castro Masaniai, arrested in May after getting into a fight with his girlfriend, remains unclear. He's not yet practicing and he has a court appearance Thursday.
- Another potential starting defensive lineman, Dominic Glover, had some academic issues, but he assured the local beat writers Wednesday that they will be cleared up by by next week.
- Oregon State hired two new assistant coaches, but the bigger news was the firing of linebackers coach Greg Newhouse, who had been at Oregon State for 14 years. Chris Brasfield was hired as running backs coach and Brent Brennan was hired to coach receivers. Defensive coordinator Mark Banker will coach linebackers next fall. He supervised the safeties last season. Cornerbacks coach Keith Heyward will now be in charge of the entire secondary.
- Linebacker Michael Bibbee and safety Dax Dilbeck quit the team. Both were reserve players not expected to start.
- Oregon State played seven ranked teams in 2010 -- five of which were in the top 10 when they faced the Beavers. They will play just three teams ranked in the preseason coaches poll this fall, but all three -- Wisconsin, Stanford and Oregon -- are ranked in the top-10. They also play Arizona State, which is ranked in ESPN.com's preseason power rankings, as well as Utah and BYU.