What to make of recent de-commitments
Four-star defensive back Troy Warner de-committed from Oregon on Monday night, marking the second de-commitment in the eight days following a similar announcement from four-star wide receiver Theo Howard last Sunday. It’s been a rough go of it for Oregon since four-star cornerback Jared Mayden and four-star linebacker La’Mar Winston verbally committed to the program at The Opening. The Ducks 2016 class now stands at 12 verbal commits following a hot start dating back to Brady Breeze’s commitment last summer. While this is a setback, the sky is not falling in Eugene. Keep in mind that Oregon is still a program coming off a Pac-12 Championship, Rose Bowl victory and berth in the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship game. It possesses some of the flashiest facilities in the country and has developed into a program that has won at least 11 games every year since 2010. That’s an attractive resumé that’ll pop with most recruits. More importantly, Oregon boasts one of the longest tenured coaching staffs in the nation, a real key when recruiting in an area that doesn’t have some of the location advantages or championship prestige of other programs. Both Howard and Warner committed within a couple of weeks of each other during early spring visits. While early commits look great on paper, the real key is keeping them attached to the class until National Signing Day in early February. Second thoughts can seep into the mind of an athlete with several months to go in the process. It’s not uncommon. On National Signing Day in February, Oregon lost a longtime DB commit in James Locke to Texas. The year before that it was prized athlete Budda Baker in January. The year before that it was Dontre Wilson following Chip Kelly’s departure. Recruiting has its ups and downs and for Oregon it’s a down period. It’s the recruiting circle of life so to speak. But with official visits coming up and several big name prospects (Nigel Knott, Javon McKinley, Lamar Jackson, Terry Wilson, etc.) with locked in dates, the Ducks will have plenty of time and opportunities to make up their recent losses. If anything, it’s a sign that you can never be too comfortable during the recruiting cycle. The next five-plus months should be something to watch.
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