Four-star LB Travis Hughes: "I love Oregon"

The last time Oregon went in to the Tidewater region, they came up empty, as then five-star quarterback Tajh Boyd from Phoebus, Virginia spurned the Ducks in the final hour to go to Clemson University. Duck fans, however, are hopeful their luck will change in the Commonwealth with the latest recruitment of four-star Virginia Beach (VA) Kempsville linebacker Travis Hughes.

Do you currently have an offer from Oregon?

"Right now, no. I know I talked to the coach last month I think when they were first allowed to start making their phone calls, he was one of the first coaches to call me. He said he had LOTS and LOTS of interest in me going back to football season. I know they went through a coaching change and I knew I had an offer earlier -- I never got an official -- but they gave me a verbal earlier. I don't know what happened, but the coach did say that they were HIGHLY interested in me and everything like that. So I'm just waiting on that."

Do you remember which coach or coaches you spoke with when they gave you that verbal offer?

"It was Coach (Peter) Sirmon. He was the first coach I ever talked to. The other coach I talked to was a black guy and he had been there (at Oregon) for awhile."

How often would say that you were in contact with the Oregon coaching staff?

"Not since the first time they were able to call have I heard from them. That's the only time I really talked to them. He talked to me through e-mail one time too. He talked to my dad and everything, but I had never got a chance to call him back."

What would you say your overall interest in Oregon is?

"Oh, I love Oregon. Y'all are beasts. I love Oregon to death. It's a great program out there. They talk high about Oregon. The conversation I had with the coaches was high talk about Oregon. I already knew where the program was headed and everything right now by watching them last year. I actually have been wanting to get out there, but my dad was kind of hard on it because I don't have an offer and that I can't really trip without an offer. But Oregon is nice and it's a good situation at Oregon, talking education-wise, and you think about the Nike brand is out there and you could probably get in to marketing and everything like that. So for Oregon, there is lots of pluses."

Would you say that those things are what have you most interested in Oregon?

"Definitely. The program, the stadium, the crowd, the fans...I guess when I called (the coach), he was at some women's convention and there was a whole bunch of ladies (laughter) and all I heard was 'Oregon! Oregon! Oregon!' and it sounded live in there. It was crazy. It sounded like they were having a blast."

How would you describe yourself as a player?

"As a player, I'm very versatile in my opinion. I'm fast, I have pretty good speed. Right now I'm 225 lbs and I run like an 11.2 100 meters and that's my fastest time this year in the 100. I've been doing track and running track all my life and playing football all my life. I'm a pretty versatile athlete, I love to hit people...Dick Butkus is probably the person I frame myself after. My dad let me watch some of his old tapes and everything and Dick Butkus and Ray Lewis is one of my other guys that I like to look at...on the offensive side, you would have to say Adrian Peterson is the best person to look at...but I love the intensity that Dick Butkus played with and I try to bring that type of feel. You talk to one of my coaches, he'll tell you I'm the craziest person on the field but I'm just as cool outside of it. I'm a maniac about football."

Would you say you try to pattern your game after those players?

"I try. I mean Dick Butkus controlled his era and Ray Lewis, right now, is Ray Lewis. I try my hardest to emulate those two. The fear and everything they bring to the football field is amazing and it's exciting to watch them play."

What are you looking for in a program?

"Right now, basically the most important thing for me is to get a feel for the people recruiting me and of course getting out there. I guess that's the first thing. You've got to get out there and actually see where you're looking at going and get a feel for the college and everything...that's the best way to evaluate anything. I know that I do want to take trips out to California -- because USC is out there -- and out to Oregon because y'all are really strong. I love y'all to death. They got a lot of flair over there. The program is at a place where if they're looking at going to a national title, it's pretty serious."

What are some of the offers you hold right now from other schools?

"I have offers from USC, LSU, Maryland, North Carolina, Michigan, NC State, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Clemson, West Virginia, Connecticut, Louisville, Kentucky, Tennessee, East Carolina, Texas Tech...there's too many to list off."

Do you have a top list of schools right now?

"There's a lot of standouts. I would say that I probably have a top ten. Right now, I'm not gonna allow Oregon in that because I don't have an offer, but I do have a top ten. I do love Oregon though and I can't wait to talk to another coach."

If Oregon was more involved with your recruitment, would they jump in to that top tier of schools for you?

"Definitely."

Have you taken any unofficial or Junior Day visits yet? Are you planning on taking any?

"I actually probably hit up every local school that you can think of that's three or four hours away. I went to Virginia Tech, North Carolina, NC State, Virginia, Maryland, East Carolina. Also, I'm trying to get down to Clemson and LSU. They're the ones that are a little spread out. Them and Michigan."

Travis Hughes profile


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