CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) -Sammie Stroughter surprised his Oregon State teammates by showing up at practice Saturday, four days after it was announced he would take a leave of absence from the team.
The senior wide receiver was in pads and joined his teammates in drills at the Beavers' afternoon practice.
He had announced Wednesday in a statement released by the university that he was dealing the grief from the deaths of two family members and longtime Beavers assistant Jim Gilstrap.
Stroughter, a third-team All-America selection last year, had last attended practice on Aug. 7.
Oregon State coach Mike Riley said Stroughter's full return to the team was still undetermined and that he was just ``testing the water.''
``It was Sammie's choice today,'' Riley said in a statement released by the school. ``He just showed up, got his gear on and came out. That's really what happened. There is no real word about it. He came out and practiced and is just having fun. ``
``We visited this morning; we talked about a longer-range plan, but really it will end up being a personal choice for Sammie,'' he said. ``The statement that he made was pretty clear that it was a personal choice.''
The Beavers open their season Thursday night at home against Utah.
Stroughter caught 79 passes for 1,293 yards last season. He scored eight touchdowns, three of them on punt returns.
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