DAY 1: Spring football begins at Oregon State
MARKUS WHEATON
MARKUS WHEATON
Beaverfootball.com Senior Writer
Posted Mar 28, 2011


CORVALLIS -- While starters Ryan Katz, James Rodgers, and Jordan Bishop were among the viewing crowd, the first day of spring football wrapped up for the Oregon State football team in Truax with some big catches by Markus Wheaton and three interceptions, one from each quarterback.

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Everything ran as planned for the first day of spring ball for the Beavers. For the offense, quarterbacks Jack Lomax, Cody Vaz, and Sean Mannion all took about even reps and each of them threw an interception.

Starting quarterback Ryan Katz has not been cleared to start throwing again and is still wearing a brace on his right wrist, but he did have a CAT scan today and is waiting on the results. Head coach Mike Riley said he hopes to have Katz back for two or three weeks of spring ball.

Markus Wheaton caught three big passes downfield and was the only receiver to make any big plays other than Micah Hatfield off a Vaz throw.

Rodgers played catch on the sidelines but said he felt good about the group of receivers out there today.

RODGERS ALSO SAID his knee feels good but he does not have a date yet for when he will be able to go full speed again. As for his number change (used to be 8, is now 1), he said it wasn’t because of brother Jacquizz, but because he wanted something different and that he is doing it for himself.

There were no standouts in the running back lineup on Day 1 in the non-contact practice session, however Jordan Jenkins looked faster than usual.

Besides that, Ryan McCants, Jovan Stevenson, and Danny Evans all looked about even.

Not much action from the tight ends today, but Joe Halahuni looked slim catching passes in warm-ups.

RILEY SAID it’s encouraging to have former OG Grant Johnson make the position move to center and the line as a whole is in good shape -- but he also mentioned that there remains a lot of chemistry to build on the offensive line.

On the defense, there is no depth chart that has been released yet, but it’s safe to say there is a lot of developing that will be done over the course of spring ball to help define the defensive line and linebackers.

Riley said it’s critical to figure out good placement for the defensive line. Kevin Frahm, Dominic Glover, Blake Harrah, and Rusty Fernando had good chemistry (probably the most of any group today) during plays -- DE Glover was playing on the inside and Frahm caught a backwards pass late in practice.

THE SAFETIES all had about even reps, Ryan Murphy caught an interception thrown by Lomax.

Cameron Collins also had an interception thrown by Vaz early in practice but that’s about all anybody saw from the linebackers.

Corners Brandon Hardin and Jordan Poyer both covered receivers well today and looked healthy and in great shape.

Poyer is also playing baseball for OSU (18-6) right now but Riley WAS happy to see him back out on football turf and said he was pleased with both Poyer and Hardin’s action on the field.

NEW ASSISTANT COACHES Brent Brennan (receivers) and Chris Brasfield (running backs) were enthusiastic from start to finish.

Brennan said he is currently living on Danny Langsdorf’s couch and will move his family here when his three kids get out of school. Brennan is excited to be at Oregon State and feels good about the receiving group, so far.

No major surprises on the injury list — Katz out (right wrist), Bishop watched on crutches (ankle), Rodgers (left knee), and DT Castro Masanai (shoulder).

NOTABLE NOTES:
  • Also in attendance was former running back Yvenson Bernard, just back form the Beavers without Borders trip to Guatemala. Aaron Nichols and Keo Camat were also watching practice.

  • Mau Nomani is back from his mission and is walking on this spring.

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