Recruiting Wrap-Up: October

On Monday, Oregon welcomed its newest addition to the 2014 recruiting class in Texas defensive end Justin Hollins. Hollins, a 6-foot-5, 215-pound three-star athlete, became the 11th player to give his verbal commitment to the Ducks and the third on the defensive line alone, joining Arizona defensive end Jalen Jelks and JUCO defensive tackle Tui Talia.

Hollins is the third player to commit to Oregon in the past month, joining Arizona wide receiver Jalen Brown and Florida running back Tony James. But, with only about half of the potential class filled, it's time to look ahead at other targets the Ducks could be making a play for with signing day only three months away.

QB – The Ducks have had Morgan Mahalak wrapped up for a while and that doesn't look like that will change. The three-star quarterback has helped Marin Catholic to a perfect record this season and, in what could be a precursor to his time at Oregon, he's thriving to the point that he's being pulled early from games. In his last three games Mahalak has thrown for 568 yards and 11 touchdowns, and had a five TD performance earlier this month where he took part in only two plays the entire second half.

RB – Royce Freeman, who was in town last weekend on an official visit, said he has no plans to visit any other schools and is staying solid to Oregon in an interview earlier this week. The addition of James last month seemingly solidified that the Ducks have what they want headed into next season with a nice thunder/lightning combo.

WR – Brown was a nice addition to the class, especially given his size and length. With the Ducks migrating to more of a pass happy offense under Mark Helfrich, one would think they would like to at least grab another wide receiver before it is all said and done.

Four-star Pennsylvania prospect Montae Nicholson, who plays a style somewhat similar to current Ducks wide receiver Josh Huff, could fill that void if wide receivers coach Matt Lubick can persuade him to move 3,000 miles west. If not, the Ducks options are becoming limited.

SPARQ champion Devante "Speedy" Noil doesn't seem like much of a hope for Oregon at this point. All three Florida prospects listed with an offer - Trevon Lee, Travis Rudolph and Steve Ishmael – also seem like long shots, though Rudolph did say in a recent interview that his options are wide open at this point.

That leaves California prospect Michiah Quick. Quick has already set up and cancelled a potential visit to Eugene and it's unknown when he might reschedule. The five-star's speed is unquestionable and would be an asset for Oregon. He has two visit slots left open, one of which could result in a trip to Oregon.

TE – The focus here seems to primarily be on in-state prospect Henry Mondeaux, who could be deciding soon. Mondeaux projects to be either a tight end or defensive end on the next level and it could come down to the Ducks or rival Washington. If the Ducks strike out there, they may have a shot at top west coast tight end Bryce Dixon, who officially visited the school for the Washington State game two weeks ago.

OL – Right now, the Ducks have only one verbal commitment on the offensive line in four-star Nevada prospect Tyrell Crosby and recently lost out on Colorado prospect Sam Jones, who committed to Arizona State. While there's work to be done here, it seems offensive line coach Steve Greatwood is already on it.

The Ducks have seven additional offers out to offensive linemen according to Scout.com and should have a fair shot at a few of them. Washington State commit Braden Eggert had a successful and enjoyable trip to Eugene last weekend and said he is "exploring his options" while staying committed to the Cougars in Greg Biggins' report.

Washington prospect Kaleb McGary is still planning on visiting, as is Nevada prospect Nick Gates. You can also add Swedish JUCO tackle David Hedelin and Arizona stud Casey Tucker to the list of potential visitors. As for someone who has locked in a visit, California prospect Chris Brown plans to be in Eugene for the Ducks matchup against Utah on Nov. 16.

DL – Early on, the defensive backs projected to be the most talented group in this year's class for Oregon given the depth of talent, but defensive line coach Ron Aiken may be able to make a case for the three prospects he's brought in so far in the aforementioned Hollins, Talia and Jelks.

For the moment, this seems like where the class will stay for now. Of the four uncommitted defensive line prospects listed with an Oregon offer by Scout.com (Lorenzo Carter, Lorenzo Featherston, Malik McDowell and Solomon Thomas), none have scheduled or even indicated when they will take a visit to Eugene or if they will even make an attempt.

LB – The loss of Jordan Hoiem to retirement still hangs over this area of the defense as the Ducks have been unable to secure another true linebacker since the announcement. Based on Oregon's defensive scheme, they have a habit of taking agile defensive ends and putting them in a linebacker position. Just look at what they've done this season with Torrodney Prevot, who many thought was the signing day steal from last year's class.

That being said, Oregon still has a chance with a few prospects.

Indiana prospect Brandon Lee still has Oregon in his top six according to a Q&A done by Scout.com's Brian Dohn earlier this month. Also, Florida prospect Vincent Jackson could come out to visit Eugene and has frequently mentioned the school on Twitter. The Ducks also have offers out to Illinois prospect Nyles Morgan and Tennessee prospect Petera Wilson, though neither have set up a visit at this point.

DB – This has the potential to be one of the most talented groups in Oregon history if things shake out a certain way. Already with talented four-star Arrion Springs and JUCO prospect Dominque Harrison under wraps, the Ducks are still in play for a number of top prospects from around the country including top Washington prospect Budda Baker, four-star Texas prospect John Plattenburg Jr., Louisiana cornerback Mattrell McGraw and California cornerback Jaleel Wadood.

Of those listed, only Plattenburg has visited, but McGraw is scheduled for an official visit in December while Baker and Wadood intend to make the trip at some point after their initial dates had to be rescheduled.

Of course there is a lot of talk about a couple of California prospects in Adoree Jackson and John "Juju" Smith. Smith was in town last weekend and came away very impressed according to Greg Biggins' report. The athlete has the talent to be a playmaker at as a defensive back or receiver. Jackson is more of a wild card given that he hasn't visited, but a recent Biggins report indicates that Oregon could be one of his final trips.

Also, Ohio prospect Marshon Lattimore recently expressed coming out on an official visit to Oregon, possibly after the season, while four-star Texas cornerback prospect, Nick Watkins, has indicated he will visit at some point.

Special Teams – The Ducks did some damage by locking up the nation's top long snapping prospect in Tanner Carew. Carew will visit for the Civil War game against Oregon State.


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