Oregon Ducks: Sione Sina

Our look at position groups in the Pac-12 continues.

Arizona: Coach Rich Rodriguez is confident in both Reggie Gilbert and Dan Pettinato and anxious to get junior-college transfers Jeff Worthy, who also spent a year at Boise State, and Jerod Cody acclimated to the system. Calvin Allen, Jack Banda and Luca Bruno are coming off redshirt seasons and represent a group Rodriguez said the team needs production from.

Arizona State: With the departure of Gannon Conway and Davon Coleman, there is a question about the team's depth at end. Without Will Sutton clogging things up next year, the Sun Devils' lack of experience is even more of a concern. Sean O'Grady backed up Conway and Coleman last year, but ASU has several well-regarded junior-college transfers in Edmond Boateng, Marcus Hardison and Demetrius Cherry.

California: The Bears list seven defensive ends, but former junior-college transfer Kyle Kragen and Puka Lopa gained the most experience last season listed at the rush position. Antione Davis was outgoing starter Dan Camporeale's primary backup, but Brennan Scarlett's return is more important. He started nine games in 2012 and has been cleared to play following a hand issue that cost him the 2013 season. Todd Barr, Sione Sina and recent-transfer Jonathan Johnson are also in the mix.

Colorado: Colorado must replace Chidera Uzo-Diribe, but Juda Parker is back for his senior season, and several others have game experience. Samson Kafovalu is the likely candidate to start opposite him after making 18 tackles in seven games last year. Jimmie Gilbert was Uzo-Diribe's backup, Kirk Poston and De'Jon Wilson also played.

Oregon: The Ducks took a hit with the departure of Taylor Hart, who was named second-team All-Pac-12, but have a talented player in Arik Armstead lined up to take his spot. Armstead started five times in 2013 and left the basketball team midseason to shift his focus back to football. T.J. Daniel, Jason Sloan are projected to be in the mix for playing time.

Oregon State: Scott Crichton is gone, but Dylan Wynn remains and will likely be the Beavers' best defensive player a year after finishing fourth on the team in tackles. Lavonte Barnett, Crichton's primary backup in 2013, and Jaswha James figure to compete for the starting job, but there are two others to keep an eye on. Obum Gwacham recently switched from receiver and Mike Riley has been complimentary of Titus Failauga, who is coming off his redshirt.

Stanford: Henry Anderson has a chance to be one of the best defensive players in the conference and Blake Lueders, who switched from OLB, began the spring atop the depth chart. The intriguing prospect is Luke Kaumatule, who was recruited to play defense but began 2013 as the team's starting tight end. Spring will be important for his development, but his raw ability is impressive.

UCLA: Both Ellis McCarthy and Eddie Vanderdoes were all-Pac-12 honorable mention last season and highlight a talented UCLA defensive line. Their return will help account for the loss of Cassius Marsh, who started 12 games last year. Both McCarthy and Vanderdoes can play inside or outside, but the Bruins listed them both at end. Highly recruited DE Kylie Fitts saw playing time as a true freshman last season.

USC: Leonard Williams, the only sophomore named first-team all-Pac-12 on defense last season, is the best in the conference. Delvon Simmons, who sat out last season after transferring from Texas Tech, has a lot of game experience. He started 12 games for the Red Raiders in 2012 and had regular playing time as a freshman there in 2011. Both Simmons and J.R. Tavai, who was an all-Pac-12 honorable mention selection, can play inside or outside.

Utah: There's no replacing Trevor Reilly, who made 100 tackles despite lingering effects from a torn ACL, but Nate Orchard and Hunter Dimick both saw extensive playing time last season. The Utes have five other defensive ends on the roster, but of that group only LT Filiaga made a tackle last season.

Washington: The Huskies are in great shape with the return of Hau'oli Kikaha, a second-team All-Pac-12 selection, Cory Littleton and Evan Hudson. Josh Shirley has 10 career starts, while Joe Mathis and Psalm Wooching provide depth.

Washington State: With Toni Pole expected to move back inside, the depth chart will look similar to how it did going into last season, minus Matt Bock. After making 50 tackles last year, Xavier Cooper will start on one side, with Destiny Vaeao and Lyman Faoliu strong candidates for more playing time. Emmitt Su'a-Kalio is coming off a redshirt, and the Cougars also signed a pair of defensive ends from Hawaii in Kingston Fernandez and Hercules Mata'afa.

Previous positions

Tight end
Quarterback
Running back
Receiver
Offensive line
Defensive tackle

Oregon recruiting: Quick hitters 

December, 18, 2012
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Monday brought the quiet period, which leads to a dead period that starts tomorrow, during which coaches are not allowed to contact recruits until Jan. 4. Once the dead period ends, expect to see a flurry of activity on the recruiting trail leading up to national signing day. Many recruits will make January visits and many commitments will be made at all-star events across the country.

Speaking of all-star events, ESPN 150 LB's Trey Johnson (Lawrenceville, Ga./Central Gwinnett) and Mike Mitchell (Plano, Texas/Prestonwood) are expected to announce their decisions at the Under Armour All-American Game on Jan. 4. What that means for the Ducks is that unless they can convince one of them to commit without ever visiting Eugene, they'll be looking elsewhere to fill the final one or two LB spots. The Ducks are set to host two of their other targets when UCLA commit Myles Jack (Bellevue, Wash./Bellevue) and the recently offered Zach Cunningham (Pinson, Ala./Pinson Valley) visit Oregon on Feb. 2 and Jan. 18, respectively.

ATH Danny Mattingly (Spokane, Wash./Mead) was on campus over the weekend and could potentially take one of the remaining spots at LB or TE. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Mattingly might be better suited for the offensive side of the ball and should he choose to sign with the Ducks, he would likely get a shot at tight end. After decommitting from Notre Dame recently, Mattingly has visited UCLA, Arizona State and Oregon, with a visit to Washington likely to come in January. The Bruins, Huskies and Ducks will likely make up his finalists, and any of the three would be thrilled to land the versatile athlete.

Oregon recruiting: Quick hitters 

November, 27, 2012
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With their 48-24 victory in the "Civil War" on Saturday, the Ducks capped off another regular season that gave fans and the rest of the country plenty of reasons to believe Oregon isn't going anywhere.

The Ducks lost game-breakers LaMichael James and Darron Thomas without losing a step. In fact, they may be even better. With another strong close to a recruiting cycle, the Ducks should be able to stay at the top of college football.

[+] EnlargeThomas Duarte
Tom Hauck for ESPN.comOregon TE target Thomas Duarte is hoping to lead Mater Dei to a CIF Southern Section Pac-5 title this weekend.
While many fans are still upset about the Stanford loss, it hasn't had any effect on recruits who are considering the Ducks. Two of Oregon's remaining targets were visiting Oregon State over the weekend. What they saw was the Ducks win their third straight game in Corvallis.

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Oregon controlling the Northwest 

November, 26, 2012
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With a fifth straight win in the series -- their third straight in Corvallis -- the Oregon Ducks made it abundantly clear that they are clearly the best program in the state of Oregon and the Northwest. Saturday was the third time in five years that the Ducks have ripped a BCS bowl from the Beavers' grasp and now have a complete stranglehold on the series.

The Ducks have five straight wins against in-state rival Oregon State, nine consecutive against Washington and six straight against Washington State.

Thomas Tyner
Quavondo for ESPN.comAloha, Ore., product Thomas Tyner was offered first by Oregon State but he eventually committed to the Ducks.
Oddly enough, the Ducks don't go head-to-head with Oregon State or Washington State very often for recruits.

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Ducks recruiting mailbag 

October, 12, 2012
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It's that time again. The Ducks have a bye this week, so it's time to dig through the Oregon recruiting mailbag and see what's on your mind.

[+] EnlargeLeon McQuay III
Tom Hauck for ESPN.comCould ESPN 150 safety Leon McQuay III find himself with the Ducks?
Ruben G. (Hillsboro, Ore.):
What is going on with the Ducks' defensive line recruiting? Haven't heard hardly any news about a position that has always been tough for them.

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