Browner leaves for NFL

As expected, Oregon State cornerback Brandon Browner announced Thursday his decision to leave Oregon State University.

Browner reportedly signed with Kenny Zuckerman and is currently working out in Arizona. He could change his mind as he has not officially notified OSU of his decision to leave school. Per Oregon law, Browner must notify OSU of his decision 48 hours prior to signing a contract.

"I'm disappointed I won't have the opportunity to coach Brandon for a year or two more," head coach Mike Riley said.

Browners' absence will result in three new starters in the secondary for the 2005 season. This will be the first time the Beavers have not returned at least two starters in the defensive backfield since the 1989 season.

"This does, however, open up an opportunity for someone else to step up and make an immediate contribution," Riley said.

A host of now sophomores will have the opportunity to grab a starting role. Sophomore Gerard Lawson, a special teams standout, backed up Browner throughout the season while another special teams standout, sophomore Charles Burnley, backed up Williams.

Redshirt freshman Bryan Payton and the injury prone sophomore Kellen Marshall will also have shots at a starting spot. Redshirt freshman Keenan Lewis, who was named the Co-Defensive Scout Player of the Year, could have an inside track on the one of the spots due to his outstanding play throughout the season on the scout team.

Riley and his staff will also be looking to bring in at least one corner from the junior college ranks and two more from the high schools around the nation.

The California native was named the 2003 Pacific-10 Freshman of the Year after picking off six passes. In 2004, Browner was an honorable mention all-conference selection despite not picking off a single pass.

Many Beaver fans felt fellow cornerback and senior Aric Williams outplayed Browner for most of the season.

Browner finishes his college career with 87 tackles, six interceptions and 15 pass breakups.

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