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Oregon State's Spring Game: Going Through The Motions

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Oregon State head coach Mike Riley's disdain for potential injuries almost certainly will guarantee a vanilla, boring spring "game" devoid of any real action. George Frey/Getty Images.
Oregon State head coach Mike Riley's disdain for potential injuries almost certainly will guarantee a vanilla, boring spring "game" devoid of any real action. George Frey/Getty Images.

Spring game Friday.

That’s really all that’s left to do for Mike Riley’s program — get through this week of practice, put on somewhat of a show for in-house and TV fans and waltz into summer injury-free.

Easier said than done.

That’s always been Riley’s thing. Ever since I can remember, injury has been a worry for the head coach. Such is true for all coaches, but especially Riley. You see, he’s been in the business for a long time. He knows that health is priority No. 1 for a successful football program.

Which brings us to Riley’s spring games. They’ve never been flashy. They’re basically practices, not even glorified practices. The ones play the ones, twos play the twos, and so on. Most of the time, key starters will take a seat. Oregon State’s feature running back, Storm Woods, sustained a minor concussion Monday and likely won’t see action. Bummer.

The Portland Tribune’s Kerry Eggers talked briefly with Riley, who dismissed any sort of “there’s a winner and a loser” competition. He’ll evaluate players as he usually does, and will likely pay a little more attention to the quarterback competition between Cody Vaz and Sean Mannion. Other than that, it’s just another practice.

The spring showcase will start at 7 p.m. PT, and will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network. If my memory serves me correct, this is the first televised Oregon State scrimmage. Adding TV and in-person attendance, it will undoubtedly be the Beavers’ biggest audience.

Heck, maybe Riley will bring out a reverse or two. Flea-flicker?