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OSU football: Sean Mannion, Cody Vaz

Cody Vaz, left, works out at quarterback with teammate Sean Mannion during practice on Aug. 8. (Amanda Cowan | Corvallis Gazette-Times)

Oregon State quarterback Sean Mannion’s injury is to the meniscus in his left knee, OSU senior associate athletic director for sports medicine Dr. Doug Aukerman said Tuesday.

Mannion will have surgery in Corvallis this week, possibly as soon as today, coach Mike Riley said. He will not be with the team at BYU on Saturday so he can recover.

As soon as he begins the rehab process, Mannion will be considered week-to-week, Aukerman said. It is not considered to be season-ending injury.

Mannion was not made available to speak with the media since it’s against OSU’s policies of player interviews on Tuesday and Wednesday. An OSU representative said Mannion was upset and didn’t want to talk about the situation at this time anyway.

“He seems better today,” Riley said. “It’s natural for him to be disappointed or angry. He’s just really disappointed about this. It’s not going to go away fast. He’s very much invested, engaged and committed. He helped lead this team from January to where we are now. He’ll be all right, get this thing done and start rehabbing and be back.”

The injury occurred on a draw play in the third quarter during Saturday’s game against Washington State, Riley said. Mannion wasn’t hit, but his foot was caught in the turf and he limped off the field.

Aukerman heard about Mannion’s pain Sunday and called for a precautionary MRI that night.

The results were known Monday morning.

“I found out right before our team meeting at 9:40 a.m. on Monday,” Riley said. “The doctor and trainer came running down the hall for me. I knew it was something bad.”

On Tuesday, the team continued to prepare for BYU with junior Cody Vaz as the starter. Riley said the players have not lost focus without their offensive leader.

He stresses to them that when someone is hurt, anther player must be ready to step in and perform.

“They seem normal to me,” Riley said of his team. “Everyone was working and seemed like business as usual, as it should be. And Cody is a pretty cool customer.”

If Vaz were to get hurt short term, the Beavers will turn to walk-on redshirt freshman Richie Harrington out of Westlake Village, Calif. He played for Oaks Christian High.

The other quarterback on the roster is freshman Brent VanderVeen, who the Beavers want to redshirt. However, offensive coordinator Danny Langsdorf said they would consider using him if Vaz suffered a long-term injury.

“Richie has been in a good program in Oaks Christian, and he knows our stuff,” Riley said. “He hasn’t had a lot of repetitions at it in practice but he’s getting more and more now, and he’s a sharp kid. He’ll be ready if called upon.”

In other injury news, starting receiver Markus Wheaton (foot) and outside linebacker D.J. Welch (ankle) missed their second practice this week. Wheaton participated some early, but stopped.

“Wheaton is sore when he cuts and D.J. is a little behind (in recovery),” Riley said. “I think they’ll both be fine for the game.”

Cliff Kirkpatrick covers Oregon State sports for the Gazette-Times. He can be reached at


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