"The development of the quarterback position is going to be a key component to the success of this team. I'm not overstating that nor understating that," said Riley.
Katz gave plenty of evidence this spring he's up to the task. But that also doesn't mean Katz needs to put the team on his back and carry them. If Oregon State gets simply good production in the passing game, that sets up Jacquizz Rodgers and the ground attack.
"We're going to run the ball well. And in order to run it better, we have to throw well. And that will come down to how the quarterback plays and how we protect him so he can play," said Riley.
AT RECEIVER, James Rodgers figures to get a ton of attention coming his way from opponents following his '09 campaign.
His first year at OSU, Rodgers was a fly-sweep phenomenon. Year 2 was about showing he was a complete receiver. Last season saw him set the all time record (91) for receptions in a season -- while turning into an all-purpose yardage machine (2,328, most ever in a season at OSU).
But if Rodgers is to become the all-time receptions leader at OSU this season -- he has 161 career grabs, 60 shy of passing 2005 Biletnikoff Award recipient Mike Hass at 220 -- the other receivers will need to step up and contribute.
And it's there, along with QB, that Riley mentioned when asked where the biggest positional question marks reside headed into the summer and fall camp.
"I think guys like Markus Wheaton and Jordan Bishop have a ton of ability. And they have to get where they realize that ability in the games...We've got as much talent at receiver as we've ever had overall. But that talent has to be realized in the games," said Riley.