VERBAL: Beavs find right fit in corner

OREGON STATE WILL lose to graduation their starting cornerbacks after this season, both of whom are first team Pac-10 candidates. One who will compete next season in Corvallis to help fill the void is a 6-foot-1 junior college corner with whom Oregon State ramped up their recruiting efforts over the past 3-4 weeks. BF.C talks to the newest Beaver plus a breakdown on the '09 scholarship math.

Conroy Black (6-1, 185) didn't take long to decide when Mike Riley offered him a scholarship one week ago today.

"He told me he wanted me to become a Beaver, and I told him I would love to become a Beaver. So he was pretty riled up, just like I was," said Black, who has been shutting down an island at Fullerton College this season.

Black said things started to get real serious with Oregon State about 2-3 weeks before he verballed.

"They told me I was the kind of corner they were looking for in the defense they play," said Black. "...that I fit in perfect with man and press (coverage) and they like my size and my speed."

WITH BLACK AND Fullerton in the playoffs and expected to go far, he said his official visit will probably be sometime in January.

"I fee like I've had a pretty good season...and when Oregon State got one me, I knew that was big," said Black.

A true sophomore scheduled to receiver his AA this spring, Black will have 3-to-play-2 at Oregon State.

"They told me I was the top corner on their board," said Black.

BLACK BECOMES THE 18th known verbal commit (not including a grayshirt holdover from the '08 class expected to enroll in January in -- Jovan Stevenson out of Tucson). The Corvallis Gazette Times reported last week OSU had received an oral commitment from Josh Kaiwi, a 225-pound defensive end prospect who played both d-line and running back at West Anchorage High in Alaska. Efforts to contact Kaiwi and/or his coach have so far proven unsuccessful.

With Black and Kaiwi on board, and with Grant Enger making the call to pledge OSU on Sunday, plus with Stevenson enrolling in January, that would being Oregon State's 2009 haul at 19.

Oregon State is projected to have room to take 18 this class, although there are two caveats to that -- 1) the numbers can and do fluctuate all the way up until February's Letter of Intent Day and that can'r really be emphasized enough. And 2) OSU will oversign and grayshirt some of the new Beavs, the process of delaying enrollment until January. Depending on a few different variables, the Beavs all told are projected to sign between 20-23 on February's Letter of Intent Day.

AS FOR BLACK, he'll be coming into a good situation with two senior starters departing but he'll also face some tough competition.

On the current roster, OSU has talent waiting in the wings behind starters Brandon Hughes and Keenan Lewis -- junior Tim Clark has seen considerable action this season and is listed No.2 on the depth chart at both left and right corner. Patrick Henderson and Brandon Hardin will also compete for starting jobs. Still, losing Hughes and Lewis to graduation after this year will almost certainly provide a considerable challenge for Oregon State to maintain the high level of play out on the islands.


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