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Monday, April 1, 2013
QB Mahalak becoming a prime target

By Brandon P. Oliver

With his friend and former teammate Jared Goff already competing for the starting quarterback job at nearby Cal, quarterback Morgan Mahalak (Novato, Calif./Marin Catholic) already is making a name for himself. Without ever starting a game under center for the Northern California powerhouse, one of the more intriguing recruits from the West in the Class of 2014 has drawn attention from schools nationwide.

In addition to filling the role as Goff's backup -- he was 11-of-20 for 180 yards and two touchdown passes  -- the 6-foot-3, 195-pound Mahalak spent his junior season as one Goff's primary targets in the passing game. Mahalak totaled 19 catches for 293 yards and two touchdowns receiving and also rushed for 105 yards and three scores on 25 carries.

In addition to an early offers from Idaho and Oregon State, Mahalak recently picked up offers from Duke and North Carolina State. With five offers, Mahalak is hitting the road to get to know a couple of the programs that are in pursuit of him.

His father said his son will use part of his spring break to make a trip north to check out both Oregon and Oregon State.

"He'll spend the day with Oregon State on Monday and then spend Tuesday and Wednesday with Oregon," Mahalak's father, Geoff Mahalak wrote in an email. "Coach [Scott] Frost wanted Morgan to come up and see how they run practice.  It's a chance for Morgan and coach Frost to get to know each other better."

Between the Ducks' new offensive coordinator and their former offensive coordinator -- new head coach Mark Helfrich -- the Ducks have been in touch with Mahalak for some time. His diverse skill set seems to be a perfect fit for the Ducks' dynamic offense. The Ducks are well aware of that fact and that is why -- according to Geoff Mahalak -- Helfrich has been down to see Morgan Mahalak four times throughout the past year.

If the communication between the Ducks and the rising star is any indication, Mahalak is clearly one of the Ducks' top quarterback targets in this recruiting cycle. His story is similar to that of another former Ducks recruit who was about the same size and also sat behind an elite quarterback until his senior season: Marcus Mariota.