Early overview of OSU 2011 class recruiting

OREGON STATE WALKS a recruiting path all their own. There are of course measurables, Mike Riley looks for speed over size for example, but by and large the Beavers are judicious above all else. And despite how recruiting keeps getting earlier and earlier, OSU's measured approach works. The Beavs are the only team to finish in the top three of the Pac-10 standings each of the last four seasons.

Oregon State has 11 known offers out at this early stage. With the 2011 Signing Day still 11 months away, it's the fewest number of offers of any of the Pac-10 schools in the Northwest.

Washington has extended 37 offers according to Scout, while WSU has 25 out there. The Ducks have 17 known offers on the table. Click here and here for the BF.C offer tables.

EVERY SCHOOL HAS has to offer some guys this early. If not, they miss out on any realistic chance to sign them as others develop relationships. But for Oregon State, those offers, those types of guys, are few. If the Beaver staff doesn't receive feedback from a top-level prospect that he's interested in OSU, Riley has said, the Beavs move on and don't spend much time looking back.

There are good reasons why Oregon State waits. For one, their summer camp has been a boon over the years.

Guys in shorts running 40's and throwing passes without a pass rush are good tools in evaluation, but coaching a recruit up close while he goes full contact, that's invaluable.

It's why 2010 signee Scott Crichton, who BF.C projects has star potential, and who the other Northwest Pac-10 schools wanted badly, didn't receive his OSU offer until after the Beavs' camp.

There are also off the field elements, ones that take time to find out. The prospect needs to be happy at OSU because, as Riley says, Corvallis is not L.A.

And a prospect's senior season, whose influence in the college football recruiting process has waned considerably with earlier than ever offers and verbal commitments, nevertheless remains a very valuable metric -- for those schools who wait.

DT Fred Thompson and S Ryan Murphy were offered after OSU saw them play their senior season. This past Signing Day, both were among the more highly regarded members of the Beavs' class.

THE FOCUS OF that Beavs' 2010 recruiting class, which was the smallest of Riley's tenure at OSU due to such a small graduating class, was on the defensive side of the ball. Expect more balance, and more offensive commits, in 2011.

Keep an eye on Arizona this recruiting year -- 2010 wasn't as good a year for Grand Canyon state recruits, but it is projected to be a better crop in 2011.

As for 2011 JC candidates, the positions of most immediate playing need next year might be on defense, at cornerback and defensive end -- the Beavs will be on the young side there headed into '11. It won't be a surprise if the Beaver coaches go the junior college route in this class at both spots.

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