The Jonathan Smith era at Oregon State is already a month long. We have seen some progress on staff hiring, though not as much as hoped or expected, and we have not only had the first ever December signing period for recruits, but also some time to digest it.
So far, its been a rather underwhelming experience.
Smith was a popular hire, and given his track record at Washington, Boise State, and really, Montana too, there’s reason to believe he might just pull the Beavers out of their current tailspin / head long dive into the ditch, the likes of which have not been seen since the Jerry Pettibone debacle.
But the events of Smith’s first month back in Corvallis haven’t done anything to warrant optimism that the climb will come quickly, or even in sizable steps.
Easily the most notable event was the hiring of twice former head coach Mike Riley as an assistant head coach, though one without an assignment, as Smith and Riley both are taking the approach that Riley will be in part a mentor, and will pick up whatever assignments Smith’s other assistant coach hires don’t cover, assuming those ever get completed.
The hiring came at Riley’s suggestion, as he contemplated offers to join Chip Kelley at UCLA, and a B1G Ten team.
It could prove to be a good move, given that so far, there is no one else in the program that has any head coaching experience, anywhere, at any level, Smith included.