Jonathan Smith and the Oregon State coaching staff are looking to lay down a foundation to build on with their 2019 recruiting class to carry momentum into each class going forward. The staff has been carefully evaluating prospects that they feel would best fit the atmosphere in Corvallis and the style of play they want to establish inside Reser Stadium on both sides of the ball. You can certainly see the attention to detail the staff uses when it comes to evaluating high school prospects from the state of Oregon and the heightened level of importance the staff places on repairing relationships with those players and their high school coaching staffs.
So far, so good in the state of Oregon. The Beavers have a commitment from 247Sports three-star defensive tackle Kelsen Hennessy from Clackamas high school and 247Sports three-star athlete Anthony Gould from West Salem high school, but Oregon State has still been aggressive in their efforts to secure more in state talent.
During the April 28th weekend, the Beavers coaching staff hosted close to 100 recruits on campus and over 100 football alumni to get people excited about the football program once again and get the fans engaged as we prepare for the 2018 season.
One of those recruits who was on campus in Corvallis, who has flown under the radar in the state of Oregon, is 6-foot-7, 225-pound 247Sports three-star tight end/defensive Cory Stover from Marshfield high school who kept things a little more private than most recruits do and quietly announced his verbal commitment to Oregon State, over an offer from Cal and interest from Oregon and Washington, on April 28th while attending the spring game.
“I received my offer from the staff while attending a spring practice on April 14th, but prior to that OSU had sent me lots of letters months prior to visiting the campus. Coach Jake Cookus watched one of my basketball games and after that, we started communicating frequently on Twitter. Most of my contact with the staff has been with Coach Cookus. During the spring game, which was a great day overall, I had the chance to have a one on one conversation with Coach Smith and that’s when I told him I was ready to go ahead and commit to the Beavers. It was a great feeling!”
The massive Marshfield athlete had visited Corvallis to check out the team and coaching staff on three different occasions for unofficial visits before the weekend of the spring game and each visit gave him a better feeling than the last.
“Oregon State is definitely is a great place in a great college town with awesome people and overall vibe to the community. You get the sense that there is a great relationship between student athletes, the teachers, and the academic support staff. From top to bottom, they’re all around great people at Oregon State.”
The lasting impression that first year head coach Jonathan Smith has made on Stover has made him feel comfortable to commit at this time and has Stover bought into the vision that Smith has for the Beaver football program.
“Coach Smith is a great guy and being someone who was a student athlete at OSU, he has the knowledge of what it’s like to be a player there, what it takes to win, what kind of players fit the school and football program, and what culture needs to be brought back that makes OSU and Corvallis such a special place. He talks about his own experience within the program and school and how when he was a student athlete there, there was a big percentage of players from the state of Oregon. He’s fully dedicated to bringing that back and making sure players from this state are made to feel like a priority in Corvallis.”
While Stover plays both tight end and defensive end for his Marshfield team, the Beavers see him playing on the defensive side of the ball after being thoroughly impressed with his motor, quickness getting off the line, and agility when it comes to getting pressure on the opposing quarterback with his 6-foot-7 frame.
“I think defensive end will be my primary spot and where I fit in the best. (Kelsen) Hennessy and I will be a scary duo on the defensive line and I think we could create a lot of chaos and wreak havoc under Coach Legi while playing in Coach Tibesar’s defense.”
When asked we he thought of current 2019 commits Anthony Gould and Kelsen Hennessy, he is eager to get to know them more, thoughts about the future of Beaver football, and talks about what kind of special class the want to build.
“I haven't talked to Anthony or Kelsen too much, but I know they’re great guys and great football players. I can’t wait to continue to build our relationship as we all go into our senior seasons. I’m glad they’re locked in and just as excited as I am to be a Beaver.”
The Marshfield product still thinks about the night of November 25th, his team’s 4A state championship game against Cottage Grove and has vowed that his only focus his senior season is to do whatever it takes to help his team get back to that championship game, this time with a different outcome.
“I’m locked in. As a leader on both offense and defense I want to motivate my teammates. It fuels my motivation to get better and better in the weight room and on the field. No more 2nd place finishes, our only goal is to win a state championship, no question about it.”
Building The Dam will continue to check in regularly with Stover throughout the summer and during his senior year with Marshfield as he will likely take a trip or two to Corvallis to check out the game day atmosphere while he works hard on and off the field to help his Pirates football team capture that elusive state title.
Stover’s Hudl highlights:
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