5 Reasons to Get Excited for 2016


In wake of my previous “Boo Bird” post, Peter has been trying to amp me up for this season — which is a seemingly impossible task. After all, I looked at the schedule again today, and dang, it’s brutal, especially later in the season. But a college philosophy professor once stressed the importance of being charitable when attempting to make a point, so here’s five reasons I am looking forward to watching the Beavers this fall.

A Nall/Cook Punch. Ryan Nall seemingly has switched positions too many times to count in his short OSU career, but appears to be entrenched at running back in wake of his strong late season performance last season. He, combined with a healthy Tim Cook, could form a dynamic combination in the backfield, one that combines power and toughness. I’m also interested to see what Kyle White brings to the mix.

Linebacker Infusion. The loss of Rommel Maego hurts, and the Beavers could have all new starters at linebacker, but two incoming players give me hope, lots of it actually. Shemar Smith, who is participating in Spring Ball, and Andrzej Hughes-Murray, already have the the weights you like to see at OLB, and are two of OSU’s more impressive recruits. Add Wesley Payne to the mix, with returners such as Jonathan Willis, and the Beavers might not miss a beat and be much improved here.

A Home run Threat. It seems like it’s been awhile since the Beavers had a player who was a threat to take it to the house anytime he had the ball. Please forgive me because I have a gut feeling I am overlooking someone, but I am thinking Brandin Cooks was the last big-play threat. But guess what, I think Paul Lucas can be that guy for the Beavers this season. He’s got the speed, agility, and vision to be a serious threat. So I look forward to seeing what the receiver turned running back can do.

Collins’ Departure. Seth Collins is a freak athletic and was a huge playmaker for the Beavers last year, but I think the Beavers will be better without the drama that came with him — and that’s why I am not going to dive into it or speculate. I think Darell Garretson and Marcus McMaryion will benefit a lot from this change, and yes, I am not giving up on McMaryion. May the best QB win.

Nowhere to go but Up. I’ve mentioned this before, but a wise co-worker once told me that expectations are the first step toward disappointment. If you read my previous post, clearly, I am not too thrilled about the Beavers right now, but you know, having low expectations means i can celebrate the small victories more and not get too crushed about any crushing defeats.

So, there you have it. While I think the Beavers will be hard-pressed to double last year’s win total, there are several things I am looking forward to this season. Go Beavs! (RW)

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