Oregon State’s “Spring Game” to prepare for the fourth season of Beavers football under Jonathan Smith’s tutelage was a solid display of the future of the program on Saturday. With quarterback Tristan Gebbia still out due to injury, back-up Chance Nolan lead the first team offense behind what looked like a fairly decent offensive line. Right tackle Brandon Kipper is still the anchor of a group that will need to make life easier for BJ Baylor and Ta’Ron Madison, the replacements for star back Jermar Jefferson.
In the passing game, tight end Luke Musgrave caught a touchdown pass, as a switch-up diversion to a group of speedy receivers including Champ Flemings and Tyjon Lindsey. One talented pass catcher in Jesiah Irish is still maybe the best kept secret on the Beavers roster and he might be a player who we didn’t see much on Saturday, but who makes the rotation come the Fall. Fans also got a peek at freshman Sam Vidlak, a much-beloved recruit, who lead the second-team offense.
No matter what way you slice it, Isaac Hodgins was the man of the day. Hodgins played extremely well in disrupting the flow of the offense from the inside-out and then after the game, he proposed to his girlfriend. Not a bad day at the office. The defense overall had a nice showing, led by some familiar veteran faces in Jaydon Grant, Andrzej Hughes-Murray and Omar Speights. Kansas transfer Elijah Jones also looked to settle in as the day went on, as a key piece in a secondary that may be able to hold their own in the Pac-12 after struggling in recent years.