Fox Sports' Petros Papadakis, fresh off guest hosting the national Jim Rome show, was the first guest on the season premier of the Joe Beaver show today on KEJO 1240-AM, the flagship station of the Beaver's radio network, with Mike Parker, voice of the Beavers, and Jon Warren.
Petros, it's well known, likes coach Mike Riley, and the Beavers, but nevertheless has both a nationwide platform, and credibility to go with it. And his thoughts on a number of things Pac-10 are relevant, especially after visiting camp at all 10 conference schools.
"Oregon is the most talented, but Oregon St. has the most tangible combination of offense, defense, and special teams."
More of Petros' thoughts after the break....
Ryan Katz holds the key to how far Oregon St.'s success will go, and Petros is high on Katz.
"To be honest, I think (Oregon coach), Chip Kelley would kill to have Ryan Katz on his team right now."
Petros views Katz, who was also considered by Oregon, and Kelly, coming out of Santa Monica high school, as being a bigger version, but a lot like, Jeremiah Masoli, as far as his ability to move, and create.
"They do things differently in Corvallis."
That's part of why Petros is high on Katz's future, noting that, in a time most kids that are even potentially QB prospects, have professional position coaches starting in about the seventh grade, Katz didn't come in with pre-built tendencies.
"Mike Riley and Danny Langsdorf are the first 'Professional' quarterback coaches for Katz. Riley has been able to mold him into what he needs to be (since he stepped on campus)."
Looking around the conference, Petros assessed some of the Beavers' top challengers.
"I don't see Washington's defense stopping anybody. Washington and Stanford have the best offenses, but the worst defenses in the conference. They will win some games 42-40, then turn around and lose 45-42. That's not the formula for a championship."
"Arizona has big questions on defense. ASU has the best defense, but will their offense be able to help them? And regarding UCLA, we don't know how well the new UCLA 'pistol' offense will do."
Petros's evaluation of Stephen Paea, was short and succinct. And also not a bad possibility. Petros sees Stephen Paea as a "more compact Haloti Ngata."
Riley's coaching impresses Petros, who sighted James Rodgers as a prime example.
"James came in as a freshman who couldn't run a route down field. He's there in part because you want 'Quizz, but they hand him the ball in the fly sweep, and look at what you got. Then, each year, he has added things, and has been a completely different player. Now look."
Petros, like many not associated with UCLA, is positive about the expansion to the Pac-12, and Conference Commissioner Larry Scott.
"We (the Pac-10) will survive (because Larry Scott was proactive). Petros expects an overall move to fewer, larger conferences. "I don't think the Big XII and the Big East will (survive) when all is said and done."
Conference alignment is an emotional subject to many, but Petros has no preference, noting "Someone will always be upset with something about it."
Petros also weighed in on a variety of subjects swirling around USC.
"USC still looks like a pretty solid team."
The changes coach Lane Kiffen have made, compared to the days of Pete Carroll, who was rivaled only by Mike Riley in terms of open access to practice, have received a lot of note from a lot of quarters. As Petros explained,
"I had to fill out a pamphlet to be at practice. And I'm the (Fox television) Pac-10 analyst, an alumni, a former captain, and my whole family went there!"
USC faces the lack of a couple of bowl appearances and the loss of scholarships as a result of the courtship of Reggie Bush by agents (in part due to the open access Carroll allowed), and Petros didn't mince words about how Bush handled things.
"Reggie Bush was stupid and selfish at the time he was there, and cowardly in his handling of the matter afterwards."
Petros doesn't see the scholarship limit hurting USC (as much as it might some) in terms of attracting top recruits, noting:
"Kids go to USC because they want to be in the NFL. And they still have that."
Overall, Petros isn't as moved either way as many by recent events with the Trojans.
"USCis not better or worse, just different. The are a little (too) tight right now, but that will work out in time."
Petros did point out that, despite the noted overall balance between offense and defense,
"You Gotta Win That Civil War!"
Petros concluded with a comment Beaver Nation can be happy with.
"I love the Beavs, and McMenamins! Tater Tots for Everybody!