Sammie Stroughter (Jr., 6-0, 183)
Chris Johnson (So., 6-1, 180)
Zach Tarver (So., 6-5, 207)
Firmly entrenched at split end is Sammie Stroughter who is one of Matt Moore's favorite targets. Chris Johnson is perhaps the fastest receiver on the team who can stretch the field, but sometimes has trouble holding onto the ball. The coaches like Johnson's play making ability as they want to get him the ball in the open field where he can use his athletic prowess. He also has spent some time at flanker, but he must work on his overall game before seeing the field. Zach Tarver has command of his body, but doesn't have the skills to crack the two deeps at this point. Freshman Casey Kjos will redshirt.
Redshirting: Matt Frosland (Fr., 6-2,
Junior Brandon Powers moved into the starting slot spot after Marcel Love had trouble in the classroom and was eventually kicked off of the team. Powers has good size and strength so he can take a beating and keep on ticking. Shane Morales is lankier and, perhaps a step faster, but is still developing. With Ruben Jackson's return to the lineup there has been talk of moving Anthony Wheat-Brown back to the slot, but Mike Riley has said Powers will stay at slot and Wheat-Brown will stay at flanker. Junior Matthew Sieverson was moved from safety to receiver in the spring while Taylor Kavanaugh, who had an outstanding April, has had a quiet August. Walk-on Matt Frosland will redshirt.
Redshirting: Ryan Pohl
Adam Koets is the least heralded on the offensive line, but has turned in a solid college career with 23 consecutive starts under his belt. Tavita Thompson is improved but an ongoing work in progress. Freshman Ryan Pohl will redshirt.
Many of the running plays are to the left side right behind Jeremy Perry and there is a reason for that. Big, mobile and mean he is always looking to take a defenders head off. And despite Perry's outstanding ability, offensive line coach Mike Cavanaugh calls sophomore Andy Levitre the most versatile, and one of the best, lineman on the team. He can step in at tackle or guard and has taken plenty of reps with the first team in the fall. Redshirt freshman Gregg Peat will have to wait a year to see time on the field.
Redshirting: Alex Linnenkohl (Fr., 6-2, 284)
Historically the Beavers have had several solid centers from Chris Gibson to Matt Brock and now to Kyle DeVan. A heady player with good leadership skills he is the jell that holds the group together and keeps the line focused. Adam Speer is no slouch either and walk-on Marcus Henderson has proven to be a valuable asset. Speer has worked at left guard with the second team while Henderson is used on the left side of the line on goalline sets and at center with the second team when Speer is at left guard.
Redshirting: Mau Noami (Fr., 6-4, 338)
On mission: Geoff Garner (Fr.
Junior Roy Schuening has quietly pieced together a solid collegiate career with 23 straight starts. Schuening is a preseason All-Pac-10 performer in many publications and is one of those players that is often overlooked by fans, but recognized by coaches for his outstanding work on and off the field. As mentioned above Andy Levitre can play any position and is the number one backup at both guard spots. Zach Harris missed a week's worth of practice due to a concussion. Freshman Mau Noami will redshirt, while Geoff Garner is gone on his mission.
Josh Linehan (Sr., 6-5, 305)
Tavita Thompson (So., 6-6, 319)
Redshirting: Timi Oshinowo (Fr., 6-6,
Other: Michael Marks
Besides Perry, Josh Linehan is the most physical lineman on the team. He has started 22 of the last 23 games and will certainly earn honorable mention Pac-10 honors at the conclusion of 2006. Sophomore Tavita Thompson also backs up this tackle position. Freshman Timi Oshwino is a monster at 6-6 and will redshirt. Michael Marks is set to join the team after the start of the season as he focuses on his personal life.
A little bit of everything at tight end. As you already know Joe Newton has been dominant at practices. The Oregon native says he is in the best shape of his life and that is good news for the Beaver offense and bad news for the Beavers' opponents. Jason Vandiver missed all but a week and a half of fall camp recovering from a shoulder injury, but is expected to be ready Aug. 31. Freshman John Reese and Howard Croom are battling it out for the third spot. Croom has recently been slowed by a shoulder injury. Dan Weis suffered a concussion and missed over a week. Brady Camp, Jake Hermeling and Gabe Miller, who is almost recovered from an Achilles heel injury, will all redshirt. Devin Unga is on a mission while Joe Halahuni is expected to enroll at OSU in January.
There's not much that I can say that you already don't know about the quarterback situation. Senior Matt Moore is the starter with Sean Canfield as the back up. Junior Ryan Gunderson is out of the starting picture but is invaluable on the sidelines as an extra coach. Junior Lyle Moevao received lots of reps in August and the coaches would prefer to redshirt him. Walk-ons Brennan Sim and Mana Silvia will redshirt while Kaulin Krebs is on his Mormon mission.
Redshirting: Andy Stewart (Jr., 5-11, 213)
Junior Yvenson Bernard is the star of the group and will receive the bulk of the carries, 200 plus, while Patrick Fuller and Clinton Polk will split 150 or so touches. Riley has said that they will use a two-back set about 20-percent of the time and that is where Micah Strickland comes into play. Strickland has a fullback look and mentality who will be used mainly for blocking or slipping out of the backfield for a short gain via the pass. Tony Carrasco is a valuable scout team member while Andy Stewart could possibly redshirt.
Anthony Wheat-Brown (Jr., 6-1, 218)
Ruben Jackson (Sr., 5-10, 197)
Brian Davilla (Jr., 5-11 176)
It's a good thing senior Ruben Jackson hunkered down and passed his summer classes because a good portion of the offense involves him and it solidifies the receiving group. Jackson will be the primary backup at all positions until Johnson and Morales are ready to play. Due to Jackson's return and Morales and Johnson's development the staff can afford to redshirt Kyle Brown who has potential, but needs some polishing before stepping on the turf. Redshirt freshman Anthony Crosby could return to the team at the beginning of the season. Walk-on Samm Oltman will redshirt.
Alexis Serna (Jr., 5-8, 157)
It can't get much better at this position with one of the nation's top place-kickers. The great news is Alexis Serna is around one more year. Freshman walk-on Justin Kahut is his understudy and barring an injury to Serna, he and Jake Webber will redshirt.
Tomorrow - Projected Depth Chart: Defense