CORVALLIS, OR - Oregon State returns its top five tacklers from a season ago, including linebackers Michael Doctor and D.J. Alexander. However, the middle of the front seven on defense is a question mark for the Beavers in 2013.
OSU will start two new defensive tackles and a new inside linebacker in the fall. The top contenders for the middle linebacker spot are Joel Skotte, a sophomore from Bend and Josh Williams, a junior from Los Angeles.
"I think they're both intelligent," said Alexander. "They're fast. They both need to work on a couple little things, but the things they've got to work on are in the same area. So, it's kind of working out for them."
Skotte or Williams will be replacing Feti 'Unga who started 19 games for the Beavers. 'Unga who also went by Feti Taumoepeau, had 56 tackles in 2012.
"It's going to be hard to replace Feti 'Unga," said Doctor. "He did a tremendous job for us last year and the years he was here. Joel Skotte and Josh Williams, they both have had great competition at it. I think either one would be a best fit for us."
Michael Doctor led the team in tackles in 2012 with 83. 11 of those were for loss.
At practice on Tuesday, tailback Storm Woods was held out of drills for a concussion suffered on Monday. His status for Friday night's spring game is still up in the air.