Offense will rule Beavers in 2012
The 2012 Beavers roster has plenty of holes in it. They’re a team that needs a lot to go right in order to make any postseason pushes.
With that said, they’re still a squad with some really standout players. The offense is designed to put up a lot of points, with a great quarterback and a corp of stud receivers.
Though the defense remains Mike Riley’s biggest project, he still has a couple of stars to lean on.
Here’s a list of stat projections for the five biggest players OSU has to offer in 2012.
Brandin Cooks (WR)
Projections: 50 catches, 725 yards, 7 touchdowns; 10 carries, 70 yards, 0 touchdowns
Brandin Cooks has a ton of potential and I expect a big season from the sophomore.
He’s got really good speed, giving him offensive versatility. I expect him to be utilized in the fly sweep, opening up plenty of scoring opportunities.
Still, he’s not going to be the primary target. That’s got to be Wheaton, and that’s why I see Cooks having a good season, but not a great one. He’ll still be a lot of fun to watch.
Scott Crichton (DE)
Projections: 80 tackles, 5 sacks, 17 tfl, 5 ff
Scott Crichton seemed to come out of left field last year. Thank goodness he did, as the freshman was one of the Beaver’s best assets on defense.
He enters 2012 one year stronger and smarter. The same goes for the rest of the defensive line. If they play hard, it’ll become that much harder for opposing O-lines to double up Crichton.
I don’t know if he’ll have a season much better than last year, but he’ll still cause plenty of havoc at the line.
Jordan Poyer (CB)
Projections: 60 tackles, 5 interceptions, 10 deflections; 25 yds/kick, 0 touchdowns; 15 yds/punt, 2 touchdowns
No. 14 has been touted as one of the best cover corners in college football. He’ll get his tackles, he’ll get his interceptions and he’ll deflect plenty of passes.
He’s also the go-to-man in the return game. Kick returns remain his specialty, as he’s averaged 25.9 yards per return over his three years at OSU.
Markus Wheaton (WR)
Projections: 90 catches, 1300 yards, 5 touchdowns; 25 carries, 200 yards, 1 touchdown
Markus Wheaton is one of the best receivers this school has ever seen, and yet he’s never surpassed 1,000 receiving yards in a season. That’s all going to change in 2012.
Wheaton has a competent quarterback that he’s worked with for over a year. He’ll surely be Mannion’s favorite target all season long.
Working in Riley’s multifaceted offense will help as well. Wheaton is great in reversal plays, racking up plenty of rushing yards. He’s OSU’s best weapon, and as a senior I expect his best season yet.
Sean Mannion (QB)
Projections: 67% completion, 3,700 yards, 20 touchdowns
Sean Mannion has a legitimate shot at breaking every record Derek Anderson ever put up at OSU. With that said, these projections almost seem to be underselling the second year starter.
Last season, Mannion was thrust into the starter role two games into the season and still managed to put up over 3,300 passing yards with a 65% completion rate.
Now, he’s a year stronger, he has a full year with the offense under his belt and he’s been working with his receivers from day 1.
There’s no reason 2012 won’t be a huge year for the Beaver’s start quarterback.