UO charging hard after OSU verbal

JOHN BRAUN was Oregon State's first verbal commitment in their '09 class, making the black and orange call back in March. But commitments don't become official until February of next year when Signing Day rolls around and the Beavers' rival, the Ducks, are making a hard push for the 6-5, 245-pounder to come their way.

Oregon has remained in contact with Albany's Braun since he pledged to Oregon State including this past weekend.

Braun characterized where he's at by saying he hasn't closed any doors, and that Oregon State remained high on the list.

"I verballed because I like Oregon State, but I haven't signed yet, I guess. I do really like Oregon State, though," said Braun.

THE BEAVER COACHING STAFF has also stayed in close communication with Braun since he verbally committed, both through writing letters and Braun picking up the phone and calling them in Corvallis.

"I talk to coach Locey a lot," said Braun.

Braun will be at OSU later this week, and will head to both Oregon State and Oregon's main summer camps later this month for two days apiece.

OREGON STATE LIKES Braun on the offensive line, while Oregon has talked to him about lining up on defense. Braun wasn't adamant about playing either position but he does have an affinity for playing on the defensive side of the ball.

"I like defense but I'll play wherever it helps the team out..But yeah, I love defense," said Braun.

"He can pull and trap and can block rush ends (on offense). For a man his size he has very good feet," says West Albany High coach Randy Nyquist. "..He's a pretty good defensive player...and I think if offensive line didn't work out for him, he could play on the other side of the ball."

TWO OTHER PAC-10 SCHOOLS, Cal and UCLA, have both talked with Braun recently as well. But distance will likely be a factor in his decision.

"I've mainly been looking at those two close to home," said Braun.

West Albany was 14-0 last season and a big part of their offensive success was found running behind Braun. He also helped lead a defense in '07 that surrendered a mere 5.4 points per game. Very athletic for his size, Braun earned first team all-state and all-league honors on both offensive and defensive lines as a junior.

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