RILEY: Beavs in good shape headed into bye

MIKE RILEY SAYS the bye is coming for Oregon State at a really good time. He also covered a wide variety of topics in his Sunday night presser on the Colorado game and more...

Cornerback Sean Martin, Riley said, is fine. "I don't think he wasn't even put on, wasn't even listed on the injury report."

OL Connor Hamlett (knee) has been bothering him for a couple weeks, will get MRI tomorrow.

Linebacker Joel Skotte has a significant turf toe, will be out of practice tomorrow.

Riley said Grant Enger, Tyler Anderson, Josh Mitchell, Storm Woods and Gavin Andrews all have a chance to return to playing after the bye.

Riley said Sean Harlow "played a pretty darned solid game." Riley said his name was one of the first brought up in post-game eval by the coaches.

Riley said the Beavs "mad a little progress" in the run game. "It wasn't great, but it was better, and maybe we can build on that."

Riley said one of the Beaver coaches noted Colorado wasn't making much of an adjustment when the Beavs ran the fly sweep as a decoy, and it worked "very well" late in the game, Riley said.

Riley said it was "really big" how the Beavs played all day, especially early after the interception return.

Riley said the Beavs will practice light on Monday, and then Tu, Wed, Th, and then give them the long weekend, and then the Beavs will come back on their regular routine.

"I think it's perfect timing for this team right now," Riley said of the bye, being able to give some players rest, others some extra work. "Hopefully we'll then be stronger going into the rest of the season."

Riley said the Beavs will do a little WSU prep this week before getting into their regular week of game prep.

Riley said he doesn't know a lot about WSU yet but they'll now have the time to study them. He said Mike Leach is "a fun guy to be around."

Riley said he was disappointed to hear Lane Kiffin was fired, saying he likes Kiffin and thought it was a hard coaching situation he inherited. "I know I wouldn't want to be down 15 scholarships."

He said it makes him appreciate the situation he has at OSU, and guessed it made other coaches everywhere feel the same.

Riley said this year's team is "growing, and I really like that about them.

Riley said the Beavs had 11 explosive plays (plays over 20 yards) but he said he didn't think they played great on offense, with more three and outs than any other time this year, drops, etc. He said the bright side is he'll point these things out to the players "and they get it." He said they also know the schedule gets harder and harder from here on out.

Riley said he's encouraged the coaches to look at what the Beavs need to improve on, what they need to add – a laundry list to clean up and improve headed into this next stage of the season. He likes that the players have gotten "a lot better" since that first game against EWU. "We're better on the line, we're better in assignments…"

Riley said Mana Rosa and John Braun are continuing to get better. He said losing Michael Doctor, Jabral Johnson continues to improve and maybe played his best game yesterday. Rommel Mageo has stepped up, he said, and the two safeties, Ryan Murphy and Tyrequek Zimmerman both played good against Colorado.

Riley said the surge in Beav takeaways "is huge."

Riley said they don't want to be one-dimensional, but they'll also do what they need to win the game and won't beat their head against the wall if they find they can't run as well as they'd like.

Riley said the combination of pressure and coverage against Colorado was overall their best of the season so far.

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