Oregon State Beavers

TEMPE, AZ - DECEMBER 07:  Pac-12 Commissioner, Larry Scott stands in front of the Stanford Cardinal as they celebrate the Pac 12 Championship after defeating the Arizona State Sun Devils 38-14 at Sun Devil Stadium on December 7, 2013 in Tempe, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Pac-12 to tamper down on select #Pac12AfterDark kickoffs

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When you allow television networks to pay you $3 billion to broadcast football games and happen to be located on the West Coast, you’re going to pay for it in the form of late kickoffs. ESPN and Fox want eyeballs on their networks as long as possible on fall Saturdays, and they’re not putting SEC games on at 10 p.m. Eastern time.

So, naturally, the Pac-12 drew those time slots.

And they absolutely hated it.

Remember, this is a conference that only recently joined the 21st century. For decades, the conference was happy with its 10 teams, its football games played on Saturday afternoons and its basketball schedule diced into a handy Thursday-Saturday format. Larry Scott was hired in 2009 to modernize the league while increasing the bottom line, and part of that required late kickoffs.

But on Tuesday the conference announced it has worked with its television partners to reduce the number of late kickoffs. ESPN and Fox won’t change their late slots, but the conference has received clearance to play Pac-12 Network games in previously exclusive windows of 2 p.m. or 6:30 p.m. local time. The change is expected to reduce the late night kickoffs by “up to” four games.

“The Pac-12 has some of the most loyal fans in college athletics and we appreciate our television partners working with us on this important issue for fans,” Oregon AD Rob Mullens said in a statement. “The increased exposure and revenue from our contracts with ESPN and FOX Sports have been instrumental to our success, but we continue to work hard to minimize as much as possible the negative impact late start times have on our fans who travel great distances to see our teams in person.”

Additionally, the conference announced it has instituted a field storming fine structure of $25,000 for a first offense, $50,000 for a second offense and $100,000 for a third offense. The SEC has a similar structure on its books.

“The Pac-12 Council carefully considered this policy and its impact on our fans who loyally support our teams,” Cal AD Mike Williams said. “This enhanced policy underscores the importance our universities place on the safety and welfare of our student-athletes, officials and fans, and will allow us to educate staffs and fans on procedures going forward.”

Finally, Pac-12 Network will start broadcasting eSports contests between member schools. Clear your schedule now.

One of two four-star OSU signees won’t be playing for Beavers after all

CORVALLIS, OR - NOVEMBER 15:  The mascot "Benny" of the Oregon State Beavers performs on the field during the game against California at Reser Stadium on November 15, 2008 in Corvalis, Oregon.  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
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A 2016 recruiting class for Oregon State that garnered its highest Rivals.com rating (41st) since 2013 included a pair of four-star signees.  When the Beavers return to Corvallis for summer camp in a couple of months, that number will be cut in half.

In a tweet posted to his personal Twitter account, and citing “unforeseen circumstances,” Shurod Thompson revealed that he will not be attending Oregon State in the fall as previously.  While no specific reason was given, it’s believed academics played an overriding role in the decision.

247Sports.com had Thompson rated as the No. 7 safety in the country and the No. 34 player at any position in the state of California. Thompson and Texas athlete Christian Wallace were the highest-rated members of the Beavers’ most recent recruiting class.

The Oregonian writes that “Thompson was rated the No. 8 safety in the country and at one time held offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas and others, but several programs had backed off due to concerns about whether or not he would be admitted into college.” It’s believed Thompson will now go the junior college route in an effort to get his academic house in order.

Utah St. transfer Darell Garretson sits atop Oregon St.’s QB depth chart

LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 09:  Quarterback Darell Garretson #6 of the Utah State Aggies throws against the UNLV Rebels during their game at Sam Boyd Stadium on November 9, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Utah State won 28-24.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
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Entering spring practice earlier this year, many an observer viewed Darell Garretson as the favorite to win the starting quarterback job at Oregon State.  Exiting the spring, those views have been officially validated.

OSU released its post-spring depth chart Wednesday afternoon, with Garretson’s name sitting atop the quarterback position.  While it’s not the be-all, end-all, Garretson put the finishing touches on the spring portion of the competition with a 21-32, 263-yard, three-touchdown, no-interception performance in the recent spring game.

Garretson had been in a competition with sophomore Marcus McMaryion and early-enrollee Mason Moran.  McMaryion, who started the regular-season finale last season, is listed as the No. 2 quarterback and Moran No. 3.

The competition is expected to continue on into summer camp, although Garretson will, again, enter as the favorite to start the season opener against Minnesota Sept. 1.

Garretson transferred to OSU from Utah State in July of 2015.  NCAA bylaws forced him to sit out all of last season.

After starting seven games as a freshman in 2013, Garretson played in just five games in 2014 before suffering a season-ending wrist injury.  It was announced in late March of last year that he was transferring out of USU.

Seth Collins rejoins Oregon State with a new position to play

Oregon State quarterback Seth Collins (4) looks for a receiver during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Washington State, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, in Pullman, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
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Oregon State’s dual-threat quarterback Seth Collins has had a change of heart and will return to the Beavers program in 2016 instead of following through on a plan to transfer to Northern Illinois. He will do so playing a new position according to a report from The Oregonian. Collins will make a switch to wide receiver.

Collins was to play quarterback for the MAC program, but he will now be used as a wide receiver in Oregon State’s offense. He says he is ready to make up for lost time this spring and embraces the chance to be welcomed back bu his Oregon State teammates.

“I’m very humbled that my teammates and coaches have provided me the opportunity to rejoin the team,” Collins said in a released statement. “Coach [Gary Andersen] did not always agree with the direction that I was headed during this process, but was always there to talk and support me as a person first.”

Collins made a surprising and seemingly out-of-the-blue decision to leave the Oregon State program in January with the intent to continue his playing career elsewhere. No reason for the decision to transfer was given at the time, but something clearly has changed for Collins in Corvallis.

Collins started seven games for Oregon State in 2015 before a knee injury put him on the sideline for the next four games before he returned for a season finale game against Oregon, where he was used in a variety of ways in the offense. Despite missing time due to the injury, Collins still finished the year as Oregon State’s leading passer with 935 passing yards and six touchdowns and leading rusher with 575 rushing yards and eight rushing touchdowns.

Oregon State’s quarterback depth appeared to take a hit with the loss of Collins and Nick Mitchell transferring to Division 2 Dixie State. The Beavers see a quarterback competition ongoing between Utah State transfer Darrell Garretson, Marcus McMaryion and early enrollee Mason Moran with JUCO transfer Daniel Prieto joining the mix later this summer.

QB-turned-TE Brent VanderVeen has left the Beavers

Brent VanderVeen
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Looking up at more players above him on the depth chart than he’d care to, Brent VanderVeen has decided to call it a night in Corvallis.

VanderVeen was a participant in Oregon State’s first spring practice session of the year Sunday.  A day later, OSU officials confirmed, VanderVeen had decided to leave the Beavers football team.

A school spokesperson confirmed to The Oregonian that VanderVeen will remains enrolled at OSU and finish his degree.  Whether he uses his final season of eligibility at another football program remains to be seen.

VanderVeen began his career at OSU as a three-star quarterback in the Class of 2012.  Upon the hiring of Gary Andersen as head coach, VanderVeen was moved to tight end for the 2015 season.

His only catch (for 14 yards) and pass attempt (an incompletion) came during what appears to be his last season  with the Beavers.