Oregon State Athletics Announces 16th Hall of Fame Class

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Oregon State Athletics Announces 16th Hall of Fame Class

Congratulations to these Beavs!

Oregon State University will induct its 16th Athletics Hall of Fame class on the weekend of Sept. 25-27, Beavers Vice President and Director of Athletics Scott Barnes announced Monday.

The 16th Hall of Fame class includes: Dennis Erickson, football head coach (1999-2002); Aki Hill, women’s basketball head coach (1978-1995); Tarrah Beyster, All-American softball pitcher (1997-2000); Mark Radford, men’s basketball (1978-1981); Danny Mwanga, men’s soccer All-American (2008-2009); and Jodie Taylor, women’s soccer All-America and International Player of the Year.

In addition to those six individuals, the Beavers will enshrine the 2001 Fiesta Bowl team and the 1980 women’s rowing team.

DENNIS ERICKSON: Led OSU to three bowl games, including the famed 2001 Fiesta Bowl where OSU defeated Notre Dame. OSU was 31-17 during his coaching tenure. His overall collegiate record, which also includes head coaching tenures at Washington State, Arizona State, Idaho, Wyoming, and Miami, is 179-96-1. 

AKI HILL: Named head coach after being highly recommended by some of the sport’s most influential people during that era (John Wooden, Pete Newell and former Portland Trail Blazers’ executive Stu Inman). A 17-year OSU career with a school-record 274 victories and eight postseason tournament appearances. 

TARRAH BEYSTER: A four-time All-American and then All-Pac-10 softball student-athlete while at OSU. The Chula Vista, Calif., native earned Pac-10 Pitcher of the Week seven times and concluded her career on the mound with 91 victories. She also was an accomplished batter with a .382 batting average with 143 RBI and a then NCAA record 211 walks. The four-year letterwinner (1997-2000) was the 2000 NCAA Woman of the Year for the state of Oregon and led the Beavers to the NCAA Tournament twice. Her number “0” is retired by OSU.

MARK RADFORD: Led OSU to the No. 1 ranking during the 1980-81 season. The Portland native was a four-year letterman (1978-81) guard for the late head coach Ralph Miller and was part of two Pac-10 title teams. Radford scored 1,390 career points, dealt 401 assists, and had 184 steals – all are among the school’s top totals. Drafted by the Seattle SuperSonics following his Beaver career, playing 97 games.

DANNY MWANGA: The Portland native was the 2009 Pac-10 Player of the Year, an All-American First Team, and the 2008 league Freshman of the Year. Mwanga shares the OSU record for game-winning goals with five and overall had 18 goals. He was the first Beaver ever taken in the first round of the Major League Soccer Draft, being selected No. 1 by Philadelphia.

JODIE TAYLOR: An internationally acclaimed athlete from the United Kingdom who lettered at OSU from 2004-07. She earned Freshman All-American honors, was a four-time Pac-10 First Team honoree and made all-region three times. She is OSU’s career leader in six statistical categories, including points with 113 and goals with 47. A former member of the Portland Thorns of the National Women’s Soccer League. She was named the 2017 International Player of the Year while a member of Arsenal.

OSU Beavers OL Andy Levitre nominated for College Football Hall of Fame

OSU Beavers OL Andy Levitre nominated for College Football Hall of Fame

Beaver nation is looking to add another decorated alum to the College Football Hall of Fame.

Former Oregon State University football standout Andy Levitre has been nominated for the honor. 

Levitre was a four-year letterman offensive lineman for the Beavers from 2005-08, redshirting in 2004. He assisted the Beavers to a 27-3 record as a starter and three bowl victories. The Beavers finished in the final Associated Press Poll each of his final three seasons which culminated with Sun Bowl victories over Missouri and Pittsburgh, and an Emerald Bowl win over Maryland.

He also grabbed himself a Pac-12 First Team honoree in 2008 and a 2007 Second Team and 2006 Honorable Mention, as well as being on the Outland Trophy Watch List, presented to the nation’s top interior lineman. 

Being coached under Mike Riley during tenure, Levitre speaks on how Coach brought the competitive energy out of everyone.

Playing for (then) head coach Mike Riley was such an amazing experience," Levitre said. "I instantly felt like I was at home the way he treated his players and that trickled down through the coaching staff. Those have been some of OSU's most competitive years and I am proud and honored to have been a part of that moment in history. The competitive spirit we took into each game gave us the chance to beat any team in the country.

Levitre was drafted in the second round by the Buffalo Bills, the highest offensive lineman in the history of the program. His career started with the Bills and ended in Atlanta with an appearance in Super Bowl LI with the Falcons in 2017.

Oregon State has a strong case for Andy Levitre to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame, his resume and his accomplishments on the field speak for itself. Other OSU candidates include: Steve Brown (1970-72), John Didion (1966-68), Mike Hass (2002-05), Jess Lewis (1966-67, '69), Alexis Serna (2004-07), and Ken Simonton (1988-2001). 

Johnny Hekker lands on NFL 2010s All-Decade Team 

Johnny Hekker lands on NFL 2010s All-Decade Team 

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee has unveiled its NFL All-Decade teams and a former Oregon State Beaver is on the list. 

Punter Johnny Hekker has been named to the 2010s All-Decade Team and joins his Los Angeles Rams teammate Aaron Donald as the only Rams on the list. 

Hekker earned All-Pro honors in six consecutive seasons, 2013-18, and was named to the Pro Bowl on four occasions: 2014, 2016, 2017 and 2018. He broke the single season record for net punt yards in 2013, after recording 78 punts for 3,609 net yards with an average of 46.27. 

Hekker also holds the record for the longest punt in a Super Bowl at 65 yards. He punted nine times for 417 yards in the Rams 13-3 loss in Super Bowl LII.  

He’s also a fake punt artist. This play from last season against the Falcons showcases why he’s the best fake punt master to play the game. 

At Oregon State, Hekker became one of the Beavers most prolific punters. He set a single-game school record with a 52.5-yard average and kicked the second-longest punt in school history at 74 yards. 

During his college career, he was named College Football Performance Award Punter of the Week, and a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award and Phil Steel All-Pac-10 Second Team.

Congrats to the former Beaver on his latest accomplishment!

JUCO SG Tariq Silver commits to Oregon State

JUCO SG Tariq Silver commits to Oregon State

The Oregon State Beavers are receiving some reinforcements.

JUCO transfer shooting guard Tariq Silver announced via his Twitter that he has verbally committed to play basketball in Corvallis.

The 6-foot-5 guard originally enrolled at Eastern Michigan University out of high school and spent two seasons there, redshirting the first and appearing in 22 games his second. 

Then, he transferred to Tallahassee Community College where he became quite the shooting threat. He averaged 12.1 points on 49.3% from the field and 45.5% from beyond the arc in 33 games played. That type of shooting will translate to the next level and create quality floor spacing for Wayne Tinkle's team next season.

The Beavers were able to secure a commitment from Silver despite a strong, late push from Temple, his only other offer from a larger school besides Wichita State. 

Beaver nation gave Silver a warm welcome.

Destiny Slocum's destiny is now in the transfer portal

Destiny Slocum's destiny is now in the transfer portal

Destiny Slocum is a tremendous basketball talent and a wonderful person. The redshirt-junior from Meridian, Idaho can take over a game and has a variety of tools in her talent basket. 

Destiny was slated to be a big-time contributor to the next Oregon State Women's basketball team this fall. Now she says she wants to leave Oregon State:

I was blindsided by the announcement. I do know once you enter the transfer portal you can change your mind. According to the NCAA rules regarding the portal:

If student-athletes withdraw from the portal, the original school can return them to the roster and restore athletics aid if it chooses.  - NCAA

I am sure there many members of Beaver Nation who would like to see that happen. But the tweet sounds like she has made up her mind. We can wait to see what is next. In a release put out by the Oregon State Athletic department head coach Scott Rueck said:

I appreciate everything Destiny means to our program and our family. I support her decision to explore her options as she is assessing what is best long-term for her career.

So we can only speculate on what is next for Destiny. I can only say I have heard rumors but I don't deal in guessing games. What I can do is lay out what is next for Oregon State's basketball team without a Destiny Slocum on the roster.

Slocum, Kat Tudor and Mikayla Pivec is quite a trio. How will Scott Rueck and his coaching staff fill the void left by their departure from Corvallis?

Aleah Goodman is of course a tremendous point guard and shooting guard. She is fourth all-time in the number of three pointers made at Oregon State and first all-time in three point shooting percentage. Remember the seven three-point performance January 30th in Boulder:

After Aleah there are a ton of questions about depth at the guard position. Jasmine Simmons will be entering her junior season. The 5'"11 inch guard from Muldura, Australia can hit the three and is pretty impressive on the boards. She averaged 12.3 minutes per game last season.
Noelle Mannon is a walk-on sophomore who provided some spark off the bench in her limited time on the floor. She played in 15 of the 32 games. One of the keys will be the incoming freshman and how quickly they adapt to the college games. Taylor Jones and Kennedy Brown showed that it can happen quickly.

Sasha Goforth is a five-star recruit who is rated in the Top 20 in just about every recruiting poll in the nation. She is really excited to get going in Corvallis :

"I chose Oregon State because of the bond I formed with the coaches during the recruiting process, the great team spirit and family atmosphere, the outstanding fan base, and the opportunity to come in and compete for national championships," Goforth said. "I also appreciated the attention that the coaches showed to defensive play and how they described how my game fits with their philosophy on both sides of the ball. Corvallis is a beautiful town and while it was hard to make the decision to leave my home state, Oregon State offered everything I was looking for. I am excited for the opportunity  

 Sasha helped Fayetteville High School to an Arkansas state title in 2017. Here is the most recent video I could find of Sasha playing last summer in the FAA finals playing for the Arkansas Banshees.

So the guard position takes a big hit with the departure of a ton of talent. But the future looks pretty bright with Goforth's arrival and the recent commitment by another five-star recruit Greta Kampschroeder who will join the Beavers in 2021.

The rest of the team includes the return of redshirt Junior Taya Corosdale who missed virtually all of last season with a hamstring injury. Taylor Jones, who made the Pac-12 all-freshman team will be a big factor inside. Jelena Mitrovic the 6-9 Freshman who sat out her first year in Corvallis with a knee issue will be ready to make an impact. Kennedy Brown suffered the torn ACL. She has had surgery but her status regarding next season is unknown at this time. Will she be ready or not. Stay tuned.

Destiny Slocum isn't the first Oregon State player to enter the transfer portal. Breanna Brown did the same thing in 2017 transferring to Georgia Tech. I had a chance to see her in Berkeley this past season she has fond memories of her days as an Oregon State Beaver. 
I wish Destiny the best. She was a standout representative of the Oregon State Women's basketball team on and off the court. It will be fascinating to see if she does change her mind or play somewhere else. The portal has become a popular avenue for college athletes. According to an inside source, 480 players in all sports are in the portal right now. Perhaps the unknown regarding COVID-19 is a factor. That is a guess.

We'll keep you up to date on the future of Destiny Slocum and her ultimate decision right here on the NBC sports northwest website.

Oregon State guard Destiny Slocum enters NCAA transfer portal

Oregon State guard Destiny Slocum enters NCAA transfer portal

In somewhat shocking news from Corvallis, Oregon State guard Destiny Slocum has decided to enter her name into the NCAA transfer portal.

The redshirt junior has one year left of eligibility.

In just two seasons in Corvallis, Slocum helped lead the Beavers to a Sweet 16 appearance in 2018-2019 and was shaping up to have another NCAA Tournament run in 2019-2020 before the Coronavirus struck.

Slocum averaged 14.9 points, 4.7 assists and 2.3 rebounds per game during her senior season. She would finish her two-year career twice earning All-Pac-12 honors.

After spending her freshman year at the University of Maryland, Slocum transferred to Oregon State in 2017. She had to sit out her sophomore season due to NCAA transfer rules. 

Oregon State head coach Scott Rueck thanked his point guard:

I appreciate everything Destiny means to our program and our family. I support her decision to explore her options as she is assessing what is best long-term for her career. — Scott Rueck

Slocum was once a projected first-round draft pick in the upcoming 2020 WNBA Draft. She turns 22 in the 2019 calendar year making her eligible to declare for the WNBA Draft, however, in her statement above, it sounds like she’s looking to play one more season of college ball.

More on Slocum from our Beavers Insider Ron Callan soon.

Sydney Wiese on the mend after testing positive for COVID-19

Sydney Wiese on the mend after testing positive for COVID-19

A few weeks ago I had a chance to talk to Oregon State alum Sydney Wiese for the Talkin’ Beavers podcast. 

At that time she had just returned home from Spain where she had been playing pro basketball. The coronavirus crisis ended her season a little early and she had quite the odyssey getting back to her hometown of Phoenix. The flight home....Barcelona, Mexico City, Los Angeles and then Phoenix. She arrived back home on March 13th and even before she got back during the trip she said she wasn't herself.

Wiese made a return appearance on this week’s Talkin’ Beavers Podcast. 

It all happened really fast. I got home on March 13th, Friday the 13th. Even the night before I lost my sense of smell and taste. It wasn't a symptom of the virus at the time. I knew I was going to be in self-quarantine at home just to be safe and traveling from Europe. — Sydney Wiese

But after getting home to Phoenix she knew something was wrong:

I knew that my body was off, I know my body and it didn't feel right. I wasn’t showing any major symptoms of the virus. Then Ruth (Ruth Hamblin who is also part of the podcast) sent me an article that said loss of smell and taste were symptoms of the virus. — Sydney Wiese

She was tested and it came back positive. She got a ton of national attention because she was the first WNBA player who tested positive. So she remains in quarantine but feels good! 

I don't feel like a million bucks but a thousand bucks. Feeling much better but I will remain in quarantine and keep an eye on my parents (Troy and Patti) to make sure they are okay. — Sydney Wiese

So Syd will remain in her childhood bedroom, in the backyard and their driveway where there is a basket she has been shooting on since she was old enough to play hoops.

Wiese, like all professional athletes, will now wait to see what happens next in their world. She is slated to begin a fourth year in the WNBA but will the season happen? She will be aided by the fact her former Beaver teammate Marie Gulich was traded from Atlanta to Los Angeles. Sydney is thrilled to have an Oregon State reunion in Hollywood!!

Marie told me and to be honest it’s too good to be true and we didn't want to get too excited because it is a business and you never know. Once free-agency passed we were able to celebrate a little bit. — Sydney Wiese

Sydney is the all-time three pointer shooter in Oregon State history, hitting 373 during her four seasons with Oregon State. This game took place during the later stage of her senior season:

  

Sydney's professional career took quite a turn for the better after two years of basically riding the bench in Los Angeles. Derek Fisher took over as the head coach and Sydney had a chance to show her talent. She started sixteen of the teams 32 games and showed leadership on the floor and as usual was a great cheerleader when not on the court. I had a chance to cover the LA Sparks vs. Seattle Storm game last summer in Everett, Washington and Syd (in the purple uniform) knocks down a nice three-ball.

 

One thing that Sydney loves is any connection to Oregon State. Mikayla Pivec's little sister Malia (who runs cross country at Boise State) attended that same game in Everett which is right next to the Pivec's hometown of Lynwood, Washington and after she had time to pose for a few pics!

Sydney will always be a Beav and during the podcast with Ruth Hamblin and Marie Gulich, I asked her how Gill Coliseum rates after playing basketball in arenas all over the planet. Sydney has played pro ball in Australia, Israel and Spain during her off-season away from the WNBA.

Ron, its not even a question. I mean even going back to college there was no arena like our home court at Gill. To be there for the progress throughout the years. I remember the team making a big basket you were heading back on defense and you couldn't ever hear each other. You could really feel the energy out there. In a tight game and you were tired you could feel the crowd and they helped us win many of those games! — Sydney Wiese

Sydney will now wait and continue to work on her health and hoop game shooting in the driveway. Will there be a WNBA season? Like all of us she is waiting and wondering. 

Check out the full podcast with Syd, Ruth and Marie. It was a treat to get to chat with three Beaver legends thanks to NBC Sports Northwest and ZOOM!!

Catch up with Sydney Wiese, Marie Gulich and Ruth Hamblin!

Catch up with Sydney Wiese, Marie Gulich and Ruth Hamblin!

With the COVID-19 Pandemic putting the sports world on hold. What are professional athletes up to nowadays?  Like us, they are held up in their homes, their bedrooms, their workout rooms trying to stay ready and trying like the rest of us to avoid testing positive and getting sick.

I thought, ya know, would they have time to perhaps get on Zoom and chat? Well, as some of you know I have been broadcasting Oregon State Women's basketball for the past 13 seasons. The 2015-16 season will always be a special one because the Beavers made it to the Final Four by upsetting Baylor in Dallas.

Three members of that squad joined me this week on Zoom for a mini-reunion!!

Sydney Wiese was a junior on that team. She graduated the next season and has spent the past three years in the WNBA playing for the Los Angeles Sparks

She joined me on the podcast from her childhood bedroom at her parent's house in Phoenix.

Marie Gulich was a sophomore on that team and has spent the past two years in the WNBA playing for the Phoenix Mercury and the Atlanta Dream. During this past off-season, she was traded to the Los Angeles Sparks!! Reunion time with Syd. For the podcast, she was nine hours ahead of us in Germany and was in a college dorm in Leverkusen.

Ruth Hamblin was a senior on the Final Four team and was drafted by the Dallas Wings. She played a season there but then decided to focus on playing for Team Canada and hopefully being part of the 2020 Olympic team representing her country. I guess we all know how that turned out. Ruth is in self-quarantine in Whistler.B.C. waiting till next week when she can go home to her parents' house in Houston, B.C. after playing pro ball this winter in Russia.

All three joined me on a wide-ranging look at their careers on the Talkin' Beavers podcast. We chatted about the impact of Coronavirus on their lives and how they are coping. And they talked about their greatest Oregon State moments

Sydney Wiese was the first WNBA player to test positive for the virus. She talks openly on the impact of the virus on her body and her well-being. I have to say she sounds great and Sydney is gonna be fine.

Here is the Talkin' Beavers podcast!

Mikayla Pivec honored as Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American

Mikayla Pivec honored as Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American

Mikayla Pivec's devotion to community service has been on display all season long. Now, the Oregon State women's basketball team captain is being honored for her contributions. 

Per a release from Oregon State Tuesday, Pivec was named Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American. 

She was chosen as one of five first-team honorees to receive the prestigious award, which honors student-athletes who make a positive impact as leaders in their community. 

While completing her honors thesis at Oregon State, Pivec focused on finding efficient ways for homeless people to get access to more resources. She was awarded a $5,000 grant for her work, in which she donated $1,000 to local shelters. 

Pivec is also the co-founder of the Beavers CARE, a group that brings Oregon State student-athletes together for service initiatives, such as trips to the Domincan Republic with Beavers without Borders. She has also volunteered with IMPACT for Life, Community Outreach Incorporated, the Corvallis Women's Shelter and DAM Worth It. 

Pivec was also one of six Beavers named to the Pac-12 Winter Academic Honor Roll on Tuesday. 

She joins Taya Corosdale, Aleah Goodman, Patricia Morris, Destiny Slocum and Janessa Thropay as Oregon State women's basketball student-athletes recognized for their work in the classroom. 

Five-star guard Greta Kampschroeder commits to Oregon State women's hoops

Five-star guard Greta Kampschroeder commits to Oregon State women's hoops

Oregon State women’s basketball just got a lot stronger in 2021 with the commitment of five-star guard Greta Kampschroeder.

The 6-foot guard from Naperville, Illinois, is the No. 12 rated high school prospect according to ESPN in the 2021 class.

ESPNW had the following evaluation of Kampschroeder from Nike Nationals in July 2019:

Skilled guard with versatility, size in the back court; playmaker with unselfish persona, executes in half-court game; manufactures shots, delivers off the dribble and finishes plays in traffic; basketball IQ, knocks down shots to the arc; competes on both ends of the floor; an elite prospect in the class of 2021.

Kampschroeder led the Naperville North Huskies in every major statistical category, averaging 17.2 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.4 steals, and ended her junior season as the DuPage Valley conference champions and a regional title (the school’s first since 2005), according to an article in the Naperville Sun.

Kampschroeder also considered Stanford and Iowa at the next level.

The Beavs will have to wait one more season to see Kampschroeder in black and orange in Corvallis, but she will be a great fit alongside last season’s freshmen sensations Taylor Jones and Kennedy Brown.

The Beavs’ 2020 recruiting class consists of: five-star guard Sasha Goforth (Fayetteville High School, Arkansas); and three-star guard Savannah Samuel (St. Francis High School, Georgia).