Taking stock of Beaver recruiting

THE BIG BOARD shows 14 known verbal commitments for Mike Riley and Oregon State in the 2011 class, with a little less than three months to go before Signing Day. That tally, however, might be one too many.

That's because of the situation involving OG Connor Thomas – you can catch up on previous events here.

More than a month has passed since that article came out and surprisingly, Thomas said he and the Beavs haven't had any discussions, none at all, since back before the situation unfolded in mid-September.

"They still haven't contacted me, so I don't really know," Thomas replied to BF.C via text message this week.

Further text messages did not clear up the question on if Thomas had been trying to contact OSU and had not received any replies, or if it was that he was simply waiting for OSU to contact him. At the time the article linked above was published, back on Oct. 8, there had already been a good chunk of time where the communication lines had been down.

But regardless of the details or inner workings, it all seems to suggest one conclusion.

Reading the tea leaves would seemingly point to Thomas no longer being in the OSU fold – it's just very difficult to imagine a Beaver commit not hearing a word from the OSU staff for about 2 months, and yet everything is still a-okay and still where they left it at the time of his verbal. (BF.C is continuing to try and reach Thomas' prep coach in an effort to gain some clarification on where things stand between Thomas and OSU.)

But put another way, taking into account the details of Thomas' situation, coupled with such a lengthy period of non-contact according to Thomas, it's exceedingly difficult at this point to imagine Thomas eventually signing his Letter of Intent to Oregon State in February.

It is recruiting, however, and stranger things have been known to happen. Stay tuned. Thomas' name, however, given the situation, has been removed from the OSU commit list as of today.

AS FOR THE rest of the class, it's trending towards the offensive side of the ball in looking at the projected positions by Scout.com. Not counting Thomas, the Beavs have known verbals from QB Peter Ashton, RBs Storm Woods and Malcolm Agnew, WRs Tyrequek Zimmerman, Richard Mullaney and Chris Lampkins, TE Kellen Clute and G Justin Addie.

Defensively, there's DEs (or d-end types) Dylan Wynn, Brandon Bennett, Na'Alii Robins and Jaswha James, and LB Josh Williams.

Look for cornerback verbals between now and Signing Day – DE and CB were two key areas where Oregon State will find themselves on the young side headed into 2011.

Defensive end was arguably the biggest area of need this class, and OSU has taken a bushel of DE-types already. Even assuming all four verbals in the class eventually line up at d-end, it might not be out of the realm of possibility OSU take another from the JC ranks – if he's special. And corner, possibly JC corners, might well be in focus in the weeks and months to come.

The numbers remain in flux all the way up to Signing Day but after crunching the numbers and talking to prep and JC coaches about OSU recruiting, BF.C is projecting Oregon State to take 2-3 DTs this class, 1-2 LBs, 1-3 CBs, 1-2 S.

On offense, Oregon State looks to have addressed their needs at QB, RB and WR. That leaves the big boys down in the trenches. BF.C is projecting the Beavs to take 2-3 offensive tackles and 1-2 offensive guards. OSU may also look to take one more tight end.

FROM A GEOGRAPHIC standpoint, OSU is all over the place this class. They have four verbals from California, three from Texas, one from Arizona, one from Hawaii, one from Missouri, one from North Carolina, one from North Carolina and one from Washington.

Being that California and the Northwest is the Beavs' bread and butter when it comes to recruiting, it would seem that OSU is likely to land a bunch of commitments from those locales over the next three months leading up to February's Signing Day. Arizona also has a pretty good class this year, and certainly better than last year's crop.

Then again, given the way it's been going, maybe this 2011 Oregon State class is about to be rounded out with playmakers from Illinois, North Dakota and Guam. Stay tuned on that as well.

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