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Oregon Football Recruiting

Torres' Take: Latest in Oregon Football Recruiting

September 16, 2020
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Welcome to another week of Torres’ Take. I hope everyone is doing well and staying safe, especially with the wildfires that are torching much of the West Coast. 

Personally, I am back home in the Bay Area to celebrate my mom’s birthday and to take a much-needed break ahead of the start of fall term in Eugene. The Ducks are on an absolute tear with recruiting, and as you might guess, that means we have plenty to discuss. 

Let’s get right to it. 

Thomas Graham Jr. 

Oregon’s other senior cornerback made the decision to prepare for the 2021 NFL Draft rather than play in a delayed 2020 season. 

I really liked watching Graham. He didn’t have the most pleasant introduction to Eugene, as he was thrown directly into the action as a true freshman for an Oregon team that went 4-8 the year before.  

During that trial by fire, Graham went head to head against such elite talent as N’Keal Harry, the former Arizona State wideout now playing for the New England Patriots. The one-time USC commit and Los Angeles native blossomed into a solid contributor, and he enters the draft among the country’s leaders in career passes defended at 32.  

Graham earned second-team all-Pac-12 honors in 2019, but he will need a solid 40-yard time to assure his draft status. Many experts view him going in the fourth or fifth round. 

If I had to take a guess, I would say Graham is off the board before Deommodore Lenoir, based on a more solid body of work.  

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What about Jevon Holland? 

Probably a question a lot of fans are asking right now. Like Penei Sewell, the ball-hawking safety has been projected as an NFL first-rounder, but he has yet to announce his intentions about playing in a delayed Pac-12 season. 

The fact that Lenoir and Graham already made the call makes Holland’s silence all the more surprising. Could it be related to the Big Ten decision Wednesday to play a fall season, and the impact that news might have on the Pac-12? 

You’ll recall that Holland was one of the leaders of the #WeAreUnited group, which sought to hold the conference accountable for the health of its players, among other demands. I think Holland may be holding out hope that Oregon sees the field sooner rather than later, in which case he COULD still choose to play. 

Even if he doesn’t end up returning, Holland is further proof that Oregon can mold high-profile talent into first-round draft picks. His success can’t help but enhance the program’s profile with elite recruits.  

Jabril McNeill 

The Ducks got some great news Monday when the 3-star linebacker (0.8741 on the 247Sports Composite) announced his commitment to Oregon. He chose the Ducks over a host of high-profile schools, but many believe it came down to Oregon and two colleges much closer to home: North Carolina State and South Carolina.  

McNeill’s commitment is a big statement, because it marks the fourth year in a row the Ducks have swooped into North Carolina to lure a recruit to come west. That trend dates to the 2018 class and running back Jamal Elliott and continued with kicker Camden Lewis and defensive tackle Jaylen Smith.  

Increasing the suspense for Oregon, Jabril has a brother, Alim, who plays defensive tackle for NC State. And we’ve seen family connections play a massive role on the recruiting trail. 

At 6-4 and 225 pounds, McNeil figures to add some muscle under Aaron Feld and his staff. His crazy athleticism projects to be a perfect fit in Andy Avalos’ diverse defense.  

McNeill may not be as highly rated as 2020’s linebackers, but his offer sheet and film back up his worth. The ScoopDuck staff has an in-depth breakdown of his game that you can read here.  

I spoke with McNeil on our YouTube channel back in June. After our conversation, I had feeling the Ducks were the team to beat. 

If you haven’t seen that interview, you can catch here.  

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Daymon David 

The 4-star (recently bumped to 0.9111 on the 247Sports Composite) defensive back from the Baltimore area appears to be nearing a decision from a top three of Michigan, Boston College and Oregon. The Ducks threw their hat into the ring late in the process but appear to be squarely in the running for this lanky the safety. 

Jhop listed him as a big riser in ScoopDuck’s latest recruiting index. Also, his offer sheet is pretty impressive -- and 23 deep. 

The Baltimore-D.C. area consistently turns out studs on both sides of the ball. Look no further than 2020’s No. 3 cornerback, Tony Grimes, who is slated to make an early impact for Mack Brown at North Carolina. 

Oh, and I might add that securing a commitment from David would only strengthen Oregon’s chances with elite wide receiver Dont’e Thornton, Maryland’s No. 2 prospect in 2021. Oregon hold all seven of the 247 Sports Crystal Ball Predictions. The Ducks could be rolling again in the very near future.  

Andre Dollar 

The Ducks continued their hot streak Tuesday when 2022’s No. 10 tight end committed to the University of Oregon. 

The 6-5, 230-pound 4-star (0.9052) prospect from Mustang (Okla.) chose between finalists Oregon and Nebraska. He held offers from 24 colleges, including both the Michigan schools and Penn State.  

On film, the one-time Florida prep’s athleticism doesn’t quite match that of 2021 tight end commits Terrance Ferguson and Moliki Matavao, but Dollar is a very solid prospect. No one aspect of his game blows me away, but I like how compact he is when he runs, and how he will fight for every last yard. 

Dollar joins Emar’rion Winston as the second recruit to pledge in the 2022 class, which now ranks No. 12 in the country. That’s already tops in the Pac-12.  

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Nathan Bittle  

Oregon basketball coach Dana Altman joined the fun Tuesday, reeling in the 5-star center (0.9948 on the Composite). Bittle was working from a final four of Oregon, Gonzaga, UCLA and Arizona. 

The former Crater (Ore.) star, who recently transferred to Prolific Prep in Napa (Calif.), projects as more of a stretch five. Bittle earned his rank as the No. 17 player in the nation with a rare combination of prowess in both shot-blocking and three-point shooting. 

The Ducks could possess some supreme length the next time they take the court, as 2019 recruit Isaac Johnson (6-11, 220 pounds) has returned from his church mission. The front court will consist of those two as well as former 5-star and returning starter N’Faly Dante. 

Bittle is the fifth-highest-rated basketball recruit in Oregon history behind Bol Bol, Malik Hairston, Troy Brown and Dante. 

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Recent Oregon offers 

2022 

Brenen Thompson, athlete 

5-10, 165 pounds 

Spearman High in Texas 

Rating/ranking: 4-star (0.9719 on the 247Sports Composite), No. 8 athlete, No. 9 prospect in Texas, No. 66 nationally 

Offers of note: Alabama, Florida, Oklahoma, Texas, USC (27 total) 

Crystal ball leader: Oklahoma has both picks as of 9/9/20.

Twitter: @BrenenT11 

  

Andre Stewart, cornerback 

6-0, 169 pounds 

Brookwood High in Snellville (Ga.) 

Rating/ranking: 3-star (0.8866), No. 33 corner, No. 27 prospect in Georgia 

Offers of note: Florida, Penn State, LSU (11 total)  

Status: committed to Auburn on July 30, 2019 

Twitter: @andrestewartOS 

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2023 

Gabarri Johnson, quarterback 

6-2, 190 pounds 

Lincoln High in Tacoma (Wash.) 

Rating/ranking: 4-star (0.9000 per 247Sports), No. 2 dual-threat QB, No. 2 prospect in Washington, No. 88 nationally 

Offers of note: Arizona State, Florida Atlantic, Utah, Washington State (5 total) 

Twitter: @GabarriJohnson5 

 
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