Oregon State ace pitcher Kevin Abel will return to Corvallis next season

Oregon State ace pitcher Kevin Abel will return to Corvallis next season

When the Oregon State Beaver baseball team runs out of the dugout and onto the field at Goss Stadium for the first time in the 2020-2021 season, a familiar face will be amongst them.

Ace right-handed pitcher Kevin Abel has decided to return to Oregon State for another season.

[Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Beavers Podcast with host Ron Callan and special guest Oregon State women’s basketball senior Aleah Goodman]

It has been an up and down career for Abel in orange and black. 

As a freshman in 2018, Abel lead the Beavs on the mound to a National Championship. The San Diego, California-native posted a 2.88 ERA and an 8-1 record in 2018 as well as a plethera of awards following a fantastic freshman year:

- College World Series All-Tournament Team
- D1Baseball.com Freshman of the Year
- D1Baseball.com Freshman All-America
- Baseball America Freshman of the Year
- Baseball America Freshman All-America
- Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-America

The next season, Abel announced that he needed Tommy John surgery to repair his elbow. The recovery time for his procedure is typically 12-16 months. 

Having Abel in the Beaver bullpen is big news not just for Oregon State but for the Pac-12 conference as well as national relevance. Abel has experience on the big stage.

Oregon State lost just one player to the 2020 MLB Draft: LHP Christian Chamberlain, No. 105 overall to the Kansas City Royals. 

Returning to the bullpen in 2020-2021 is: 

- Redshirt junior: Mitchell Verburg

- Juniors: Reid Sebby, Nathan Burns

- Sophomores: Jake Pfennings, Joey Mundt, Andrew Walling

- Freshmen: Jack Washburn, AJ Lattery, Will Frisch, Ryan Brown, Kai Murphy, Cooper Hjerpe

The Beavs were about to enter Pac-12 play before the season was suspended and then ultimately cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The NCAA granted seniors of spring sport athletes an extra year of eligibility, so senior LHP Jake Mulholland has a decision to make. But just imagine the duo of Mulholland and a healthy Abel on the mound next season…


Beavers' Christian Chamberlain selected by Kansas City Royals in MLB Draft

Beavers' Christian Chamberlain selected by Kansas City Royals in MLB Draft

Plenty of Oregon State Beavers have been selected in the MLB Draft in recent years, and on Thursday the Kansas City Royals added another one. 

With the 105th pick in the 2020 MLB draft, the Royals selected OSU pitcher Christian Chamberlain

Chamberlain has made 47 appearances in his time in Corvallis, 10 of them as a starter. The left-handed pitcher holds a 3.09 earned run average over 105 innings pitched, all while holding opponents to a .190 batting average.

The Beavers were just 5-9 this season before the season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In those 14 games Chamberlain made four appearances, all of them starts. He impressed many with a 2-1 record, 0.82 ERA, 34 strikeouts, and held opponents to just a .086 batting average. 

His performance over the shortened season earned him 2020 Collegiate Baseball Third-Team All-American honors. 


Tres Tinkle, Mikayla Pivec awarded Tom Hansen Conference Medals

Tres Tinkle, Mikayla Pivec awarded Tom Hansen Conference Medals

The Tom Hansen Conference Medal Winners for Oregon State have been selected and you may have heard of them.  

Women's basketball's Mikayla Pivec and men's basketball's Tres Tinkle earned this year’s honors.

A Conference Medal is awarded annually to each member in the PAC-12 for outstanding senior male and female student-athlete based on the exhibition of the greatest combination of performance and achievement in scholarship, athletics and leadership.

The award dates back to the 1960-61 academic year, but was renamed in 2009 in honor of Tom Hansen, who served 26 years as Commissioner of the Pac-10.

Mikayla Pivec received All-America Honorable Mention from the Associated Press, Women's Basketball Coaches' Association and the US Basketball Writers Association her senior season. The guard has been named to the Wooden Award Ballot, the Cheryl Miller Award Top-10, and the Naismith Trophy Midseason Team, and was a semifinalist for the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Award. Pivec was tabbed as the Preseason WNIT MVP and to the All-Tournament Teams for both the Maui Classic and the Miami Thanksgiving Classic.

The guard from Lynnwood, Wash. averaged 14.8 points and 9.3 rebounds per game during her senior season. She set Oregon State's career rebounding record during the Pac-12 Tournament. Pivec finished second in the Pac-12 in rebounding and fifth in the conference in field goal percentage. The guard had 14 double-doubles this season, and is in the top-10 in Oregon State history for career points, rebounds and assists.

Tinkle completed his bachelor's degree in speech communication in the spring of 2019 and earned Pac-12 All-Academic recognition three times. He volunteered at the Corvallis Boys and Girls Club, participated in a Pen Pal program with Linwood Elementary in Portland, and worked basketball camps for special needs children. He also recently delivered meals to first responders and medical personnel in Corvallis.

He finished his Oregon State career as the program's all-time leading scorer with 2,233 points. He also holds the school record for career free throws made (570), consecutive games scoring in double figures (96) and consecutive free throws made (35).

Tinkle was a three-time All-Pac-12 First Team selection and was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) District 19 First Team and U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) All-District IX Team in 2019 and 2020.


Hamilcar Rashed Jr. earns preseason All-American honors

Hamilcar Rashed Jr. earns preseason All-American honors

One of the best defenders in the Pac-12 is grabbing some early preseason honors.

On Thursday, Oregon State's Hamilcar Rashed Jr. was named a preseason All-American by the Walter Camp Football Foundation.

Rashed Jr. was a standout for the Beavers last season, helping lead a vastly improved defensive unit for coach Jonathan Smith. 

The Beaver fell short of the postseason, but the team's 5-7 record was the best finish since 2014.

Last season, Rashed Jr. recorded 62 tackles, 42 of them solo. He also led the nation in tackles for loss (22.5) and was third in the nation in sacks (14.0), both were Oregon State single-season record.

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Beavers Podcast with special guest  Aleah Goodman.

Over his three seasons at OSU, Rashed Jr. has 121 tackles, 35 tackles for loss, and 16.5 sacks. He is just three sacks away from passing Slade Norris for fifth all-time on the Oregon State career sacks list.

Another standout season for Rashed Jr. in 2020 could help Oregon State finally get back to the postseason, a place the Beavers haven't been since a trip to the Hawaii Bowl in 2013.

Rashed Jr. would like nothing more than to end his career on the ultimate high, getting Oregon State back to a bowl a game.

Listen and subscribe to “Sports Uncovered” for free wherever you listen to podcasts.

Bryce Harper welcomes starstruck Mick Abel to Phillies via video chat


Bryce Harper welcomes starstruck Mick Abel to Phillies via video chat

There’s an outpouring of emotions one feels when they hear their name called in the 2020 MLB Draft. For some it’s nervousness, it’s anger, it’s excitement and it’s joy.

Shortly after Mick Abel received a call from the Philadelphia Phillies that he was being selected as the 15th overall pick, the 18-year-old right hander out of Jesuit HS felt shock.

But it wasn’t the pick that surprised Abel. It was what happened moments later when Abel received a Facetime from an unknown number and picked up to see a Phillies star on the screen. It was Bryce Harper.

"That was pretty cool," Abel told NBCS Philadelphia. "I got caught by surprise like, oh, who's FaceTiming me? I answered and see his face pop up and I'm like, whoa, that's Bryce Harper, what the heck?"

The veteran major leaguer and new teammate had a message for Abel, who is a committed to Oregon State but expected to sign with the Phillies.

"He said welcome aboard, and the biggest thing I took away is that the grind starts now," Abel said. "Better get to work."

In 2019, Abel, a 6-5, 198-pound flamethrower, led the Jesuit Crusaders to the state championship. His team was expected to repeat before COVID-19 halted prep spring sports.

The team’s scouts visited Abel, who has been compared to Justin Verlander and Stephen Strasburg, in person in January and watched his indoor workouts. Then on Wednesday, he became the first pitcher taken by the Phillies in the first round since Aaron Nola in 2014.

Jesuit's Mick Abel expected to go in the first round of tonight's MLB draft

Jesuit's Mick Abel expected to go in the first round of tonight's MLB draft

Jesuit High School right-handed pitcher Mick Abel is expected to be drafted in the middle of the first round in tonight’s Major League Baseball draft.

Abel, a 6-5, 198-pound flamethrower, led the Crusaders to the state championship last season and his team was favored to repeat before COVID-19 called a halt to prep spring sports.

MLB’s mock draft has Abel, whose fastball has been clocked at nearly 100 miles per hour, going to the Boston Red Sox at No. 17 in the draft.

Abel has already committed to play at Oregon State, but as a first-round choice, he will likely be offered a minimum of a $2.4 million bonus for signing with whichever team picks him. Bonus money escalates the higher the draft slot.

Normally 40 rounds, this year’s draft will be only five rounds and only the first round will be staged tonight. The next four will be tomorrow night, where a couple of University of Oregon players could be selected.

Ducks pitcher/designated hitter Kenyon Yovan may go at some point, even though arm problems limited his opportunity to pitch last season. Yovan is also a prospect as a power hitter but it did not help him that this season was canceled.

Another Duck who could be selected is football recruit Robby Ashford, who is from Alabama and has signed to play quarterback at Oregon. But with only five rounds in this year’s draft, teams seem to be reluctant to use their valued picks on players they aren’t sure will sign with them.

Oregon State football players unite for Black Lives Matter movement

Oregon State football players unite for Black Lives Matter movement

Protests for the wrongful death of George Floyd in Minneapolis are still in very much full effect.

Cities from across the nation have joined together to stand against the injustice of black people and police brutality.

The nation, as a whole, knows that change needs to happen now more than ever in the wake of Floyd's death.

Like in many cities, protests have occurred daily in Corvallis.

Oregon State University, as well as some of its athletes, shared images on social media of there support of the BLM Movement and their involvement in the protest.

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Seeing Oregon State University post their support of there players protesting for what is a welcomed sight.

This process will take time, but every day since Floyd’s death, progress is being made.

Seeing teammates of different races come together to show support is a beautiful start.

Jordan Poyer looking forward to mentoring young, hungry Isaiah Hodgins

Jordan Poyer looking forward to mentoring young, hungry Isaiah Hodgins

Isaiah Hodgins’ NFL dreams came true when the Buffalo Bills selected him in the sixth round (No. 207 overall) in the 2020 NFL Draft. 

Despite now leaving his four-year home in Corvallis, Oregon and heading 2,652.4 miles east to Buffalo, New York, Hodgins will have a little sense of home.

Current Bills safety and former Oregon State Beaver Jordan Poyer.

I called him the night he got drafted just to congratulate him and tell him ‘If you need anything man, just let me know.’ I remember what it was like being a rookie, especial now its probably harder than ever because they’re not able to get acclimated to their system and be around their coaches and guys. — Jordan Poyer

Poyer wreaked havoc on the Pac-12 Conference during his four-year career in Corvallis, Oregon from 2009-12.

He was named a consensus All-America selection as a senior, the first at Oregon State since John Didion in 1967, and was tied for second in the nation with seven interceptions as a senior. Poyer started 24 games in the Beavers’ secondary.

The eight-year veteran was originally selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the seventh round of the 2013 NFL Draft. After a short stint in Philadelphia and then Cleveland, Poyer came to the Bills through free agency in 2017. He posted 71 tackles, three forced fumbles, two interceptions and once sack in 2019.

Now, he may have the chance to go up against Hodgins in New York.

What a player. Huge redone threat, huge catch radius. He can run almost all the routes. When you get a guy like that who’s hungry, who’s young and hungry, and wants to come in and learn… and understand what it takes to be in the NFL. — Jordan Poyer

Hodgins will get to learn from six-year pro Stefon Diggs, who recorded 63 receptions for 1,130 yards and six touchdowns last season with the Minnesota Vikings. The Bills traded their first-round, a fifth and sixth round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft along with a 2021 fourth-round pick in exchange for Diggs and a 2020 seventh-round pick.

Diggs and nine-year veteran Cole Beasley are likely the two main targets for third-year quarterback Josh Allen, but Hodgins could turn some heads should he have a good showing when training camps safely resume play. 

Be sure to check out the full Talkin’ Beavers Podcast with host Ron Callan and former Oregon State Beaver Jordan Poyer.

Oregon State TE Rocco Carley dismissed from team after racist remarks

Oregon State Beaver Football

Oregon State TE Rocco Carley dismissed from team after racist remarks

Late Thursday night, a recording surfaced on Twitter of Oregon State tight end Rocco Carley making disturbing racist remarks.

After hearing the recording, Oregon State head coach Jonathan Smith called Oregon State Athletic Director Scott Barnes and the two discussed what further course of action was needed and agreed upon. 

That same night, Smith told Carley that he had been released from the team. 

Carley released this statement on Twitter Thursday night:

The 6-foot-6, 236-pound tight end from Mt. Angel, Oregon was about to enter his second season at Oregon State.

Some of his teammates responded on social media:

Many on social media also praised head coach Jonathan Smith for acting quickly and making the decision to release Carley from the team, including a couple of Oregon Ducks:

Jordan Poyer 'itching to get back' but also valuing safety

Jordan Poyer 'itching to get back' but also valuing safety

Many people miss football including former Oregon State Beaver, now Buffalo Bill Jordan Poyer.

"Obviously I'm itching to get back," said Poyer on the Talkin' Beavers Podcast this week with host Ron Callan. "I want to be with my guys I want to be grinding in the offseason. Getting better, you know, to carry forward into the season."

But it's not that simple. With the United States still undergoing a national pandemic due to COVID-19, many offseason programs have been halted for player safety.

Is it worth coming back, if they were to say 'You guys can come back next week' is it worth coming back at that point for two weeks risking somebody getting sick and then having to come back again for training camp?  -  Jordan Poyer

Poyer noted that the safety of his family also needs to be taken into account. Bringing players back and forth could increase the risk of spreading the virus which would may not be worth it. 

"Uncertainty. I think that's everywhere. Not just in the NFL. With everything going on in the world right now, that's just the question. 

"Now I have a 3.5-year old so I'm worrying about health risks, traveling and guys coming from different places," said Poyer.

The former Beaver signed a two-year extension with the Bills worth approximately $20.5 million this offseason.

[RELATED]: Former Oregon State Beaver Jordan Poyer inks extension with Buffalo

 "We want to play, obviously. It's just going to be decisions made by people that probably make a lot more than I do. "

In 2019, the safety had a career-season totaling 107 tackles, three forced fumbles, and two interceptions, helping lead the Bills to their second playoff appearance in three seasons. 

Entering the NFL, Poyer fell to the seventh round of the 2013 NFL Draft despite being a consensus All-American his senior season at Oregon State with seven interceptions. He signed a four-year, $2.22 million contract with the team that drafted him, the Philadelphia Eagles. 

However, the Eagles would cut him later in 2013 and Cleveland would claim him off of waivers. Poyer was able to win a roster spot in 2013 and 2014 before starting four games in 2015. He began 2016 as the starting safety but a lacerated kidney suffered in Week 6 against the Tennesse Titans ended his season. 

In free agency, he signed a four-year, $13 million contract with Buffalo, which included $7.40 million guaranteed and a signing bonus of $3.50 million, where he has started all three seasons since. 

Listen to the full Talkin' Beavers podcast with Ron Callan and guest Jordan Poyer from the 2016 Final Four squad here.