Beavs still solid at WR, but will it matter?

OREGON STATE still looks stout at wide receiver even after the transfer of Richard Mullaney to Alabama. But will it matter?

Oregon State's quarterbacks, none of whom have taken a snap in a college game, struggled when it came to accuracy this spring.

And that's being kind.

Seth Collins is the frontrunner to win the job but it can be argued he's in that position because of his playmaking abilities to extend plays with his feet. Nick Mitchell and Marcus McMaryion didn't mount much of a charge.

Richard Mullaney went through spring ball in Corvallis and decided the grass looked greener elsewhere. He had 83 receptions for 1,160 yards and five touchdowns during his OSU career. He caught 52 passes for 788 yards in 2013 but missed half of last season with an elbow injury.

Gary Horowitz of the Statesman Journal in an excellent article opined Mullaney decided to transfer due to two reasons: the prospects of losing playing time due to a rising group of wideouts and the widely held opinion OSU is going to run it much more in 2015 under new head man Gary Andersen.

I wholeheartedly agree with the latter, I'm not as sure about the former.

Mullaney displayed such great hands and the great ability to move the chains on third down it's hard not to envision him starting despite the rising talent.

Granted, Jordan Villamin displayed plenty of flashes last season to indicate he can be a great one in the Pac-12 and his size (6-4, 235) is a tough matchup for any defensive back. Victor Bolden, who looked more and more like Brandin Coooks last season, is capable of playing on Sundays. Four other underclassmen in 2015, Hunter Jarmon, Xavier Hawkins, Rahmel Dockery and Malik Gilmore further bolster the wide receiver corps in Corvallis this season.

The big problem this spring was the delivery system.

It's easy to imagine Andersen turning more to running backs Storm Woods and Chris Brown. He didn't get much ink this spring under the new coaching staff but I wouldn't sleep on Damien Haskins either.

Neither Woods nor Brown was healthy at the end of last year and that was with Mike Riley relying mostly on the arm of Sean Mannion. What happens if Woods and Brown carry the ball at a 60-40 split this year?

What Oregon State needs most the rest of the summer, and in fall camp, is for Collins or someone else to experience a corner-turning phase, one in which the offense and its reads and checks suddenly clicks into place.

Because with or without Mullaney, it won't mean much if the opponent doesn't have to worry enough about getting burned in the pass game.


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