SPRING BALL DAY 14: Canfield stays sharp

CORVALLIS -- The weather wasn't all that cooperative today but the Oregon State air attack was clicking with quarterback Sean Canfield leading the charge. Linebackers David Pa'aluhi and Keith Pankey and d-lineman Andrew Seumalo, however, gave the offensive line all they wanted and then some. The play of the day was turned in by wide receiver Jordan Bishop, plus more.

The Sean Canfield to Darrell Catchings connection on Wednesday continued in fine form, as it has virtually all spring.

And freshman running back Jovan Stevenson continued to add his name to Oregon State's offensive equation with sophomore Ryan McCants (knee) watching from the sideline and Jacquizz Rodgers being held out of all spring contact.

The Beavers' linebackers, however, continue to make their early case for consideration of the best corps in the Pac-10.

STEVENSON TOOK SNAPS with the first string offense as McCants remains out with a knee injury. The shifty freshman showed agility on the run, and his ability to make catches out of the backfield on the day.

On one play during the team scrimmaging portion, Stevenson sprinted through his route across the flats and made a nice grab and gainer on a Canfield pass. Senior cornerback Tim Clark caught up to Stevenson right before the running back reached the end zone, pushing him out of bounds inches before the pylon.

Stevenson also later showed off some strength, pushing his way through a pile-up and shoving his way through the line scrum during a goal line drill.

AS FOR CANFIELD, one of the more impressive throws the senior has made this spring came today.

Canfield threw the pass up and over Clark and right into Catchings' hands, in the end zone. Clark had his back turned to the ball the entire duration of the pass and Catchings was able to grab the ball with one arm and make an extraordinary grab.

DURING SKELLY DRILLS, Catchings burned safeties Lance Mitchell and Suaesi Tuimaunei on one of the Beavs' bread and butter plays.

Canfield later placed another perfect pass to Catchings.

DURING THE "red ball" drills, Canfield was nearly flawless, completing every pass except for one. One noteworthy play in the drill came when Canfield hit tight end John Reese.

The senior tight end made the catch, turned, and shrugged off junior cornerback James Dockery. On the very next snap, Canfield found Catchings in the end zone for a touchdown.

The wideout barely had time to turn his head in time to see the ball but secured the purchase while sliding on the turf.

THE OFFENSIVE LINE had a few issues on the afternoon, as they allowed linebackers David Pa'aluhi and Keith Pankey into the backfield untouched on two plays.

Pa'aluhi blew through the line and busted up a Stevenson run early in the team scrimmage. Pankey went untouched into the backfield to pressure the quarterback later on during the scrimmage.

Pankey, the junior linebacker out of Visalia, California, also played factor in a Josh LaGrone interception of freshman quarterback Ryan Katz.

Pankey tipped a Katz pass across the middle intended for junior wideout Aaron Nichols. LaGrone also tacked on a big return after the pick.

FRESHMAN DEFENSIVE END Andrew Seumalo was also a pain in the offensive line's collective backside throughout the practice. On one snap, Seumalo got the better of junior left tackle Timi Oshinowo, the defensive end forcing Katz into making a dump off to Nichols.

IN THE GOAL-LINE drill, junior center Alex Linnenkohl and senior offensive guard Gregg Peat did a nice job plowing the road.

Peat showed off good quickness for an offensive lineman, pulling to kick out on a block, which set up a Canfield to Howard Croom touchdown.

On the final play of the drill, and of practice, freshman running back Jordan Jenkins took a hand off but was stopped dead in his tracks by defensive linemen Kevin Frahm and Evan Hull.

THE PLAY OF THE DAY, if not Catchings' one-handed grab in the end zone, came on a Katz to Jordan Bishop pass.

The offensive line gave the quarterback plenty of time in the pocket and Katz lofted one to Bishop, who made the grab while falling back on his wallet.

Sophomore cornerback Brandon Hardin was in on coverage of the wideout, but could not make a play as he had his back turned to the ball.

A conversation junior defensive end Gabe Miller:

Miller on his transition from TE to DE:
"I think it has been a good transition. I'm definitely happy I made the switch. I feel like I have made some progress this spring, and I just hope that I can follow this up with a good summer, a good fall camp and lead right into next year."

Miller on the status of the defensive line after Slade Norris and Victor Butler:
"Obviously those guys were big assets to our team, I think they kind of set the bar for all of us right now because they played at such a high level. We watch them on film and see what they are doing and it kind of helps us see exactly what we should be doing, so I think we should have no problems picking up where they left off."

Miller on on the secondary's improvement and importance:
"I feel like the secondary is a little bit young. During spring ball I feel like they have been getting better through scrimmage and stuff, but I think they are going to need to step up a little bit."

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