AMONG THOSE who signed with Oregon State Wednesday, sackmaster Lavonte Barnett. And with the 6-2, 228-pounder in the fold, Oregon State dramatically strengthens the depth of its linebacking corps – that's assuming of course he actually lines up at ‘backer for the Beavs…

While playing primarily as a pass rushing DE in high school, the take here is that Barnett will likely line up at OLB or LEO for the Beavers, though fall camp will provide the final word on that. Oregon State officially lists him as an ATH, and his versatility is why.

Barnett, a three-star commit from Paraclete High in Lancaster, Calif., helped lead his team to a 13-1 record while recording 16 sacks during his senior year. Stat line: 64 tackles, 24 tackles-for-loss, 16 sacks, four pass deflections, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, one blocked kick.

Ranked as the 51st best OLB recruit in the nation by, Barnett is seen by analysts as an extremely hard worker, committed to succeed. He plans on bringing that intense work ethic to the orange and black. highlights Barnett's quick feet, speed and ability to shed blocks as his main strengths and notes that he is relentless in his pass rushing abilities, while very capable in pass coverage as well.

That said, because of his athleticism, Barnett could also line up on offense, at H-back for example. He had 18 catches for 300-plus yards and five touchdowns on the offensive side of the ball this season.

Regardless of where he ultimately plays for OSU, remember the name, we think he's going to be a good one.

BARNETT WAS PURSUED hard and offered by Cal, Washington State, Fresno State and others, but held firm in his choice of OSU, pointing to its academics and family atmosphere.

As for academics, he stars on that side of things as well, with a 3.8 core GPA and a 1610 3-part SAT. He plans to major in engineering.

According to Barnett's coach, Norm Dahlia, "Coach Riley and his staff are getting a quality young man. He's just a high-caliber student athlete. And most of all, Lavonte is a great person."

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