Next Level Watch: Kelsey takes scholarship offer at Oregon State

Connor Kelsey hopes to be Oregon State's starting long snapper next season.

Connor Kelsey has accepted a scholarship to be Oregon State’s long snapper. (Karl Maasdam Photo)


When Connor Kelsey left Carpinteria for Corvallis a few months ago, he arrived at Oregon State as a preferred walk-on under head coach Mike Riley.

Now, after a red-shirt season, Kelsey already has a new coach and freshly signed scholarship papers to be the Beavers’ long snapper for the next four years. Kelsey wasn’t expecting to receive the official offer until June but the university offered it after the season instead.

Kelsey, who was a perfect 93-for-93 on long snaps in his senior season at Carpinteria High, watched Oregon State’s four-year starter Mike Morovick from the sidelines.

“I really feel that this year was important for me to understand how things work during the season so that I will be more informed on what is going on next year when it’s game time.”

Even as an observer, he said he enjoyed the sensation of being on the field with tens of thousands of people filling the stadium and even more watching on TV.

While playing in large Pac-12 stadiums was a new experience for Kelsey, he said the coaching staff at Carpinteria High prepared him well for the jump to a major college program.

“I came to realize that Carpinteria High School and Oregon State did many things in common from the workouts to just the way the practices were set up,” Kelsey said. “I really felt like I made a smooth transition.”

Oregon State went 5-7 before Riley left for Nebraska after the season. The Beavers play a nine-game Pac-12 schedule next season, and a trip to the Big House at Michigan is among three non-conference games. New head coach Gary Andersen was 30-9 in his past three seasons at Wisconsin.

“It was great getting to know Coach Riley and I wish him all the best but the same time I feel that our program needed some new energy and I believe that we can do big things now that we have Coach Gary Andersen leading us.  So I am very excited to what the future holds for our team with Coach Andersen.”

Kelsey was an All-Tri-Valley League player for Carpinteria High in 2013, and was a member of Presidio Sports’ 2013 All-City Football Team. He was a perfect 93-for-93 on long snaps his senior year with the Warriors.

Nico Bornand, UNLV Football – The 2012 Defensive Channel League MVP played a key role for the Rebels in his second year in Las Vegas. In October against Fresno State, Bornand kicked a 33-yard game-winning field goal in overtime to lift the Rebels over the Bulldogs 30-27. He was 4-of-6 on field goals throughout the season, including a make from 54 yards. The versatile player made two tackles on special teams and punted three times for an average of 44.7 yards. Bornand played at Dos Pueblos High School.

Tony Alfaro, Cal State Dominguez Hills Soccer – Santa Barbara High alum Tony Alfaro was named a National Soccer Coaches Assocation of America 2nd-team All-Region selection.

The junior defender and team co-captain now has three All-Region and three All-CCAA honors after earning a 1st-team Daktronics All-Region and 1st-team All-CCAA honor to close CSUDH’s 2014 soccer campaign.

Alfaro led the Dominguez Hills to the CCAA Championship Tournament, where CSUDH bested CS San Bernardino in the first round after holding the Coyotes to zero shots on goal and just six attempts total, before falling to top-seeded and No. 8 Cal Poly Pomona in the league semifinal.