Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Oregon recruiting: Quick-hitters
By Brandon P. Oliver
With spring ball just one week away, the Oregon football staff has an opportunity to evaluate newcomers, redshirts and returning starters to see what they will need in the recruiting Class of 2014.
The Ducks have remained active on the recruiting trail and are set up for a busy spring, as they have plans to visit recruits from all over the country during the month of May. Although many west coast recruits still waiting on an offer from the Ducks, Oregon continues to pursue many of the country's top recruits and has the attention of a good number of them. In fact, a number of recruits plan to make unofficial visits to Eugene throughout the spring. The Ducks are expected to host an unofficial junior day the weekend of the spring game.
DB Mattrell McGraw (River Ridge, La./John Curtis) still plans to visit Eugene on April 19, the weekend before the Ducks' annual spring game. McGraw isn't the only elite prospect looking to visit before the summer kicks off.
TE Dalton Shultz (South Jordan, Utah/Bingham) confirmed that he plans on being in Eugene for an unofficial visit in May. Shultz is a nearly impossible cover for any high school defender, as he is too quick for linebackers and too big for any defensive back to cover one-on-one. The 6-foot-5, 220-pound Shultz is among the top tight ends in the country and would be an absolute terror in Oregon's spread offense, which is expected to open up the passing game under Mark Helfrich.
ESPN Watch List RB Tony James (Gainesville, Fla./Gainesville) has received a long-awaited offer from the Ducks. Along with Oregon, James has his choice of schools, including Florida, Florida State, Miami, Ohio State, Ole Miss and UCLA, among others.. The Ducks' success in the running game in recent years has made Oregon one of the premier destinations for running backs, and James knows that his skills would be showcased.
OL Layth Friekh (Peoria, Ariz./Centennial) has picked up offers from Arizona and Washington. The 6-6, 251-pound athlete has been in contact with the Ducks' OL coach, Steve Greatwood. The Ducks have made a number of offers on the OL, and Friekh is still a work in progress, but he is the kind of player the Ducks look for along the front line. He has a tentative plan to visit Oregon's campus next month, and if he impresses the coaches on the visit, an offer could follow soon after.
ATH Quenton Flowers (Miami, Fla./Jackson) continues to express interest in the Ducks, and Oregon could look to make a move on the South Florida star. Flowers plays quarterback and wants to continue to do so in college, but earning a quarterback offer from the Ducks is likely a long shot. The 6-0, 203-pound athlete holds offers from Cincinnati, Marshall, South Florida, TCU and UCF. He wants to hear more from the Ducks, along with the hometown Hurricanes and LSU.
ESPN Watch List DT Enoch Smith Jr. (Chicago, Ill./Mount Carmel) will likely become one of the Ducks' top targets moving forward. Smith also plans to make a trip to unofficially visit Oregon at some point, but he is unsure of when. The 6-2, 270-pound defensive wrecking ball has offers from Michigan State, Notre Dame and Tennessee. He has been in touch with the Ducks' new defensive line coach, Ron Aiken, and hopes to continue building a relationship with the Ducks throughout the spring.