The college football season is just 50 days away! Oregon State will take on The Colorado State Rams August 26th, in Fort Collins. The early start allows the Rams to open their brand new stadium with a bang, but it also means the off-season is quickly fading.
With the off-season quickly coming to an end, Building the Dam is unveiling their top 50 most valuable football players that will help lead the Beavers to a successful 2017 season. We’ll countdown by previewing one player at a time until it’s time for some Beaver football. Keep in mind that compiling a list like this (especially in the middle of the summer) is no easy task and many worthy football players did not make the list. Without further ado, here is No. 50!
#50: Thor Katoa - Defensive Tackle/Outside Linebacker
Thor Katoa is not exactly a household name in Beaver nation (but he should be because that is one awesome name). The sophomore from St. George, Utah originally committed and signed a National Letter of Intent to play for the Utes, but did not enroll and flipped to the Beavers after coming home from a church mission. The former 3-star recruit, suffered an injury his first week on campus and missed the season as a freshman. Despite the adversity, Thor Katoa is a talented athlete and could be a versatile threat for the Beavers.
As a senior in high school Thor registered 139 tackles and 16.5 TFL. He was named to Utah’s 3AA First Team by the Salt Lake Tribune and Deseret News. Thor Katoa also has some key recruiting connections. His cousin Zach Katoa is an Oregon State commit (still serving a church mission) and he has another cousin Tayler Katoa who is a stud QB/LB, but will have to miss his freshman season at USC because of knee surgery.
Thor Katoa mainly played linebacker in high school, but has bulked up during his time in Corvallis and is expected to line up as a defensive tackle for the Beavers. Thor probably won’t be the massive body that Elu Aydon/Kalani Vakameilalo/Craig Evans are, but he could provide the defense with a certain amount of versatility that few can match. His ability to mix it up at the line of scrimmage while also being familiar with making plays in the open field could really benefit Oregon State especially as the season drags on and their depth is tested. Last season, the Beavers linebacking corps was hampered by injuries, but their front seven should be well stocked headed into the 2017 season.