Senior transfer Dakota Prukop being named the starter was pretty much a forgone conclusion. But the rise of Herbert is a surprise given that he had to beat out redshirt freshman Travis Jonsen, who entered camp being touted as a threat to win the No. 1 job, and freshman Terry Wilson Jr., who had the advantage of arriving to Oregon in time to participate in spring drills.
Earlier this week, word out of fall camp made it clear that not only could Herbert be named No. 2 but he had already taken the reigns with the second team during practice.
According to coaches, Herbert has exceeded all expectations for a freshman quarterback. According to sources, Herbert has that "IT" factor that former Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota possessed.
Of course it's premature to compare Herbert to Mariota as a player, but according to sources the 6-foot-6 freshman is very much like the former Heisman Trophy winner in terms of having a natural feel for the game and an aura of confidence. He's unflappable, according to some, and he processes information quickly, coaches have said.
- OTHER DEPTH CHART NOTES -
- WR: Promising freshman Dillon Mitchell is not listed on the two-deep depth chart but seven other receivers are, including walk-on redshirt sophomore Casey Eugenio. Redshirt junior Devon Allen, fresh off his fifth-place finish in the 110-meter hurdles at the Rio Summer Olympics, is listed as a co-starter with redshirt senior Dwayne Stanford at one wide receiver position.
- TE: Senior Pharaoh Brown, who missed all of last season with a serious leg injury, is listed as the starting tight end with senior Johnny Mundt as the backup.
- RT: Redshirt freshman Calvin Throckmorton is the starter with senior transfer Zac Morgan listed as the backup.
- DT: Former offensive lineman, redshirt junior Elijah George, who switched to defensive line during spring, is the backup defensive tackle behind sophomore Rex Manu.
- DE: Redshirt sophomore Justin Hollins is listed as a starting defensive end ahead of redshirt sophomore Jalen Jelks after a fierce battle during camp. Look for both to play a lot.
- MLB: As expected, junior A.J. Hotchkins, a junior college transfer, won the staring job over redshirt junior Danny Mattingly Jr. They should make a good one-two punch this season.
- OLB: While senior Johnny Ragin III being named one of the two starting outside linebackers is no surprise, the other side has always been up for grabs. That job has been won by true freshman Troy Dye. He had been a three-star recruit as a safety by Oregon defensive backs coach John Neal. Backing up Dye is redshirt junior Jonah Moi.
- CB: The transferring of Chris Seisay opened the door for freshman Brendan Schooler to slide in at No. 2 behind junior Arrion Springs. Schooler was a two-star recruit who didn't sign with Oregon until late June. He is a big corner at 6-2, 190.