It doe not matter what the scholarship situation is at Oregon State for quarterback Darrell Garretson. Garretson is willing to walk on with the Beavers for a chance to be a part of the program. Garretson will transfer to Oregon State from Mountain West Conference’s Utah State.
“It doesn’t matter,” Garretson said about walking on with the Beavers to The Oregonian. “I like the place too much. I actually went there on an unofficial (visit) going into my senior year of high school, and I really liked it then. I don’t think it’s changed too much.”
Garretson will be reunited with former Utah State offensive coordinator Kevin McGivens, now the quarterbacks coach at Oregon State. The Beavers will have a new starting quarterback in 2015 with Sean Mannion graduated. Garreston’s first chance to make a case for the starting job will come next year.
As previously reported, Garretson was blocked from transferring to Washington because the Huskies appear on Utah State’s upcoming schedule. The Aggies visit Washington this season on September 19. Garretson will have to sit out the 2015 season due to NCAA transfer rules anyway, but sometimes schools are pretty paranoid about players transferring to schools appearing on the upcoming schedule. Garretson will be eligible to play for Oregon State in 2016 and he will have two years of eligibility remaining once he does become eligible.
Garretson was Utah State’s leading passer in 2015, taking charge of the opportunity to play once injured quarterback Chuckie Keeton was forced to once again cut his season short due to injury concerns. In six games, Garretson completed 67.4 percent of his pass attempts for 1,140 yards and eight touchdowns with three interceptions. However, Garretson injured his wrist and that caused him to miss the second half of the season as well.
The return of Chuckie Keeton to the football field did not go as planned this fall. And now it looks as though it is over. Utah State sent out a release Wednesday evening stating Keeton is likely out for the rest of the 2014 season.
Keeton suffered a left knee injury against Wake Forest earlier in the season. The injury was to the same knee that underwent surgery last season for a torn ACL and a torn MCL. The initial feeling seemed optimistic at the time, although the team decided it was bets to play it safe. He sat out Utah State’s game against Arkansas State as a caution. Apparently things have not gotten much better in the weeks since the injury took place.
“Chuckie’s health is our top priority and he has not been cleared to play by our medical staff,” said Utah State head coach Matt Wells in the school’s released statement. “We will continue to monitor his progress throughout the fall, but given his current condition it is unlikely that he will play in any games in the foreseeable future.”
Keeton has never redshirted during his collegiate career, but this is his senior year. Whether or not he will be able to use a medical redshirt remains to be seen at this point. Here’s hoping Keeton can find a way to stay healthy though and maybe get another chance on the field. He has battled injuries throughout his collegiate career, so the concern is great for his potential future.
One thing is for sure. College football is much more entertaining and enjoyable when Keeton is healthy. Sadly, we have not been treated to enough of it.
As for Utah State, Darrell Garretson will once again assume the starting job for the Aggies. Just as he did last season, Garretson will look to lead Utah State forward through Mountain West Conference play. Last year, while filling in for Keeton, Garretson threw for 1,436 yards and 10 touchdowns and led Utah State to the Mountain West Conference championship game, where Utah State fell shy against Fresno State. This season could play out in similar fashion.
Utah State scored two second half touchdowns and shut down Jordan Lynch and Northern Illinois to score a victory in the Poinsettia Bowl in San Diego Thursday night. Darrell Garretson had his moments to forget in the victory but tossed a go-ahead touchdown in the third quarter and a two-point conversion attempt to follow Joey DeMartino‘s fourth quarter touchdown run to send Utah State to the 21-7 victory. DeMartino rushed for 143 yards to power the Aggies to the win, the second straight bowl victory for the program.
The NIU defense was actually pretty strong in the first half, holding the Aggies to a pair of field goals and fewer than 130 yards of offense, but the halftime adjustments made by Utah State proved to be too much for the Huskies. Utah State’s offense turned the table sin the second half by holding down the Huskies offense and not allowing Lynch to hurt them. Utah State succeeded in forcing Lynch to beat them through the air, and that has generally been a successful strategy for those who have defeated Northern Illinois, including Bowling Green in the MAC Championship Game. Lynch did drive the Huskies down the field in the final minutes of the game, just after Utah State took a 21-7 lead with a little over four minutes to play, and he completed a touchdown throw to Juwan Brescacin, but an onside kick attempt by NIU was recovered by Utah State to allow the Aggies to run the clock out.
Lynch ended his collegiate career with just 39 rushing yards and a touchdown and 216 passing yards and a touchdown. It was not exactly the type of performance Lynch had been accustomed to this season, but it should be a credit to Utah State’s defense to hold him to 39 rushing yards on 18 attempts. What back-to-back losses will do to his draft stock will be best left to break down by the NFL Draft scouts, but his last two performances do leave some room for criticism when discussing where he fits at the next level.
The MAC is now 0-4 in the postseason after seeing both conference championship participants, Northern Illinois and Bowling Green, suffer losses on Thursday. The conference’s last chance to win a bowl game will be placed in the hands of Ball State, a program that has never won a bowl game.
The Mountain West Conference is now 3-2 this postseason. Both losses have come against the Pac 12. The MWC i 2-0 against the MAC, including Colorado State’s wild finish against Washington State in the New Mexico Bowl.