SPRING: What we've learned - Week 4

WEEK FOUR SAW Ryan Katz definitively distance himself from the other quarterback competitors while Cody Vaz, who entered the spring at No. 3, continues to impress. Things got a little chippy between an OSU safety and tight end, and the offensive line shuffle continues. Meanwhile, Ryan McCants has bolstered the running back corps and the NFL draft proved that Oregon State is a walk-on's dream.

SPRING REPORTS: Day 10 | Day 11 | Day 12 | Photos 1 | Photos 2


RYAN KATZ IS STARTING TO SEPARATE HIMSELF. Although officially the starting quarterback spot is up for grabs - and probably continue to be heading into fall camp - Katz made long strides towards locking down a starting role and really, although the coaches will tell you differently, there wasn't much of a question headed into the spring. Katz had his best practices of the spring in Week 4, hooking up with Markus Wheaton, Jordan Bishop and James Rodgers on many scoring occasions throughout the week. Katz's extra time studying the playbook is starting to manifest itself in his ability to spread the ball around the field accurately.

IT HAPPENS FROM TIME TO TIME. For just the second time during his tenure in Corvallis head coach Mike Riley missed a practice. He attended a funeral service for Al Reser Wednesday.

THE SAGA CONTINUES. It looks like LB David Pa'aluhi will not sign up for the armed forces, but enroll at the University of Hawaii - Oregon State's opponent in 2011. Since Mike Riley released him from his scholarship, he will be eligible to play in 2011. Riley said he was aware Pa'aluhi was thinking about joining Hawaii at the time of his OSU departure in February but after a few conversations with Pa'aluhi's dad, decided to grant him the outright release.

CONSISTENCY IS THE KEY. Defensive coordinator Mark Banker told the Gazette Times that he is happy with the play of the defensive backs. They have all been in the system for several years and have the physical tools to succeed - now it is about playing at a high level all of the time.

CODY VAZ CONTINUES TO IMPROVE. The redshirt freshman has now started to share second string snaps with junior Peter Lalich. In Friday's scrimmage Vaz completed 10 of 15 passes for 169 yards and two touchdowns.

THE SHUFFULING OF THE OFFENSIVE LINE REMAINS. It isn't surprising, but worthy of noting who is working with the first and second teams. In Friday's scrimmage the first string consisted of: Wilder McAndrews, Michael Lamb, Alex Linnenkohl, Burke Ellis and Mike Remmers. The second string was made up of Timi Oshinowo, Ryan Pohl, Josh Andrews, Colin Kelly and Geoff Garner. The guards on each string rotate reps with the first and second teams.

DEPTH AT RUNNING BACK IS LOOKING GOOD. With Ryan McCants improving, Jovan Stevenson playing well and Jordan Jenkins pushing for playing time Riley is excited about the prospects when Jacquizz Rodgers is not in the game. “I’m telling you," Riley told The Oregonian. “we’re going to be in a lot better shape with with a guy, or two, or three behind Quizz than we were a year ago."

THINGS GOT A LITTLE CHIPPY WEDNESDAY. After TE Joe Halahuni steamrolled S Cameron Collins one play, a hit that left the big safety angry, Collins unleashed a full speed hit on an unsuspecting Halahuni, who was then slow to get up. Banker was not happy, immediately pulling Collins for the rest of the practice. "A bonehead move on my part,'' Collins told The Oregonian. "It's practice, it's a teammate, and you never want to take a shot like that on anybody on the team. I was just letting my emotions get the best of me.''

IF YOU ARE A WALK ON, OREGON STATE IS THE PLACE FOR YOU. WR Damola Adeniji hasn't made a team yet, but he will at the very least participate in an NFL training camp as the former walk on signed a free agent contract with Tampa Bay over the weekend. Adeniji earned a scholarship prior to his senior season and proceeded to develop into a substantial receiving threat for the Beavs in 2009, finishing third on the squad in receptions and leading the Beavs with a 14.2 receiving yard average.

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