Oregon Ducks

Former Dallas Cowboys VP of Player Personnel loves Justin Herbert

Former Dallas Cowboys VP of Player Personnel loves Justin Herbert

Despite Justin Herbert being widely expected to be selected in the first ten picks of the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft, he's had quite a mixed reception from draft experts with looming questions about his leadership and decision making.

However, the Oregon quarterback has one large believer in him: Gil Brandt. 

The former Dallas Cowboys Vice President of Player Personnel (1960-1988) held a Twitter Q&A about the Draft and had quite the confidence in Herbert as a prospect, even saying he may be better than Joe Burrow.

The reigning Heisman Trophy winner has been the slam dunk, consensus choice to go first overall in the draft to the Cincinnati Bengals for months after leading LSU to a National Championship and putting up a historically efficient passing season. But even then, Brandt thinks that Herbert is in the same tier as Burrow rather than competing with Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa and Utah State's Justin Love in the tier below. 

This also isn't the first time Brandt raved about Herbert as he praised his performance in the NFL Combine, too.

Brandt's opinion holds credence too.

In his Hall of Fame career, he pioneered many scouting techniques such as using computers for scouting evaluations, looking outside football for prospects, drafting based on potential in the lower rounds which yielded Dallas Herschel Walker, use of psychological tests and helped create the NFL Scouting Combine. Those advancements helped the Cowboys win two Super Bowls while he worked for the franchise, and trading Walker to Minnesota in 1989 paved the way for three more Super Bowls in the 1990s. 

The Cowboys inducted him into the 2018 Ring of Honor a year before his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. 

He now works for NFL.com as a draft analyst and Sirius XM as a radio host.  

The 6-foot-6, 237 pound Herbert passed for 3,417 yards, 32 touchdowns and only six interceptions while leading the Ducks to a 12-2 record, a Pac-12 Championship, and a Rose Bowl Championship in his senior season.

We will find out where Justin Herbert will begin his professional career on April 23, when the NFL Draft will be going virtual

Oregon Ducks land commitment from JUCO CB Jadarrius Perkins

Oregon Ducks land commitment from JUCO CB Jadarrius Perkins

What a Friday for the Ducks!

Hours after landing a commitment from three-star DE/OLB Brandon Buckner, the Ducks have gotten another addition to the 2021 recruiting class.

JUCO cornerback Jadarrius Perkins from Mississippi Gulf Coast CC has committed to the University of Oregon, he announced on Twitter Friday afternoon.

"FIRST and foremost I would like to thank God for blessing me with the ability to play this sport I love so much!" wrote the 6'2", 185-pound corner. "I also want to thank Coach Chance, Cristobal, and the rest of the Oregon family for believing in my talents that the good lord has blessed me with...WITH THAT SAID THIS SIP BOY COMING HOME TO Eugene I'M A DUCK BABY!!! #ScoDucks #TakeFlight21." 

Perkins held offers from Arkansas, Baylor, Louisville, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Washington State, UCF, West Virginia, and more. While unrated on current recruiting websites, it's clear that he will be a highly rated player once the lists are updated. 

He had originally scheduled his commitment for Wednesday but delayed it to an undisclosed time, which happened to be just two days later.

Only a few months after accepting the defensive backs coaching job at Oregon, Rod Chance secured a highly touted recruit in the secondary. 

The defensive back will have three years to play two when he arrives in Eugene.

He took a virtual visit of the campus on May 11 which blew him away, as he told the Oregonian's Andrew Nemec.

“I visited [virtually],” he said. “The campus is so nice and everything is top notch. They have one of the best facilities I’ve ever seen.”

Perkins also said he wants to be a unique player in the Pac-12. One that aligns with Mario Cristobal's desire to bring SEC-like physicality to the West Coast.

They want me to press and be physical with receivers,” he said. “I’m a big, fast press corner. They ain’t seen anyone like me in the Pac-12 yet. I promise you that, sir.”

You can watch his hudl highlights below.

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Oregon Strength & Conditioning Coach Aaron Feld.

Oregon Ducks land commitment from three-star DE Brandon Buckner

Oregon Ducks land commitment from three-star DE Brandon Buckner

Well, that didn't take long.

Just two days after landing a verbal committment from the nation's fourth-ranked tight end Moliki Matavao, the Ducks have secured another commitment for the 2021 recruiting class.

[RELATED]: Oregon Ducks land 2021 four-star, nation's No. 4 TE Moliki Matavao

Three-star strongside defensive end or outside linebacker Brandon Buckner, the son of former NFL defensive tackle Brentson Buckner,  has committed to the University of Oregon, as announced via his Twitter.

"First off, I would like to thank god for the position I am in today," said Buckner in his commitment video. "My whole life I've been waiting for this moment. Ever since I was a kid, the game of football has always been a passion of mine. Growing up watching my Dad play I always knew this was meant for me. To all my friends and family in Charlotte, thank you for believing in me. To my teammates, coaches and teachers at Chandler, thank you for pushing me to be a better leader on and off the field. To my Mom, Grandpa, and sisses, thank you for developing me into the young man that I am today. 

My Dad's a legend and I'm starting my own legacy at THE University of Oregon. Sco Ducks. 

Buckner's father, Brentson, was an All-ACC defensive tackle his senior season at Clemson in 1993. He then would be selected 50th overall in the 1994 NFL Draft by the Pittsburgh Steelers to begin an eleven-year professional career. He now serves as the defensive line coach for the Arizona Cardinals. 

As a junior, Buckner recorded 14.5 sacks despite missing the first four games of the season. Additionally, he recorded 25 tackles-for-loss and had 50 total tackles which made him 6A All-Region First Team selection and a Max Preps All-Arizona First Team Selection.

While not having a Clemson offer, the 6'1", 234-pound defensive end had offers from Arizona State, Arizona, Colorado, Fresno State, Oregon State, Iowa State and more. 

247Sports grades Buckner as a three-star recruit and the eleventh best player in Arizona and the tenth best by composite ranking. This marks yet another Arizona prospect that has chosen the Ducks during the 2021 recruiting cycle, following the footsteps of four-star OT Bram Walden (best player in Arizona), four-star QB Ty Thompson (2nd-best player in Arizona), and four-star OT Jonah Miller (5th-best player in Arizona). 

The Ducks continue to recruit at a high level, backing up Cristobal's claims that the 2021 class could the best one in program history.

You can watch Buckner's hudl highlights here.

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Oregon Strength & Conditioning Coach Aaron Feld.

What Oregon OC Joe Moorhead has been most impressed by from Tyler Shough

What Oregon OC Joe Moorhead has been most impressed by from Tyler Shough

There are a lot of missing pieces on the Oregon Ducks offense heading into the 2020 season that need answers, the biggest hole was left behind by now Los Angeles quarterback Justin Herbert.

The Ducks are looking for the next heir to the throne. Many eyes are looking now to Tyler Shough, however, with a new quarterback and new offensive coordinator, Oregon along with the rest of the country had just a handful of spring practices to gel the two together.

In those four practices, new Oregon Offensive Coordinator Joe Moorhead liked what he saw in Shough leading the offense and recently joined the latest ‘Happy Hour with the Ducks’ with host GoDucks.com editor Rob Moseley.

There’s a great understated confidence. I’ve always said ‘When a starting quarterback walks into a room, you shouldn’t have to ask if he’s a starting quarterback.’ Tyler can force himself that way, right on the edge of confidence and cockiness. Obviously, he can throw the heck out of the ball, he’s a very capable runner, but the thing I’ve been most impressed with is his willingness to do the little things and how seriously he takes the preparation aspect of it. That’s something from spring ball he’s carried on into meetings during this time. 

I think you’re going to see a great combination of physical skill and mental ability and preparation. He’s competitive as heck. — Joe Moorhead 

Only time will tell. 

[RELATED]: Details surrounding the Pac-12 to allow voluntary in-person workouts 

Shough has patiently waited his turn for two seasons in Eugene. In 2019, he saw playing time in five games and taken 53 snaps where he connected on 12-of-15 passes for 144 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.

Alongside Shough in the QB room is Boston College grad transfer Anthony Brown, sophomore Bradley Yaffe, redshirt freshman Cale Millen and incoming freshman Jay Butterfield. Lots of talent and all with different levels of experience. 

Someone with that experience, someone with that confidence, someone who has done it well at the highest level… It’s magnified because it’s the quarterback position but if there was someone in the transfer portal that would help make the position better, the unit better and the team better, that’s something you have to take advantage of. — Joe Moorhead said on Brown.

[RELATED]: Oregon Ducks embrace culture of competition with transfer of QB Anthony Brown

Iron sharpens iron, right? 

Watch the full interview below:

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Oregon Strength & Conditioning Coach Aaron Feld.

How Justin Herbert staying at Oregon will pay dividends for LA Chargers

How Justin Herbert staying at Oregon will pay dividends for LA Chargers

Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert was a first round pick... last year. But, he decided to stay and risk his status and his health for his team and his education. 

Now, it looks like staying that extra year is paying off for the new Chargers rookie.

Herbert posted more passing yards and touchdowns while completing a higher percentage of passes compared to his junior year.

Oh, and he also led Oregon to a Pac-12 Championship and Rose Bowl victory to round out his collegiate career.

Being selected by the Chargers at the #6 pick in this year’s draft, quarterback coach Pep Hamilton is looking for Herbert to compete on day one with the experience he has gained over the years.

The combination of size, athletic ability and arm talent (is intriguing,) but more importantly, he's had a ton of experience playing in games. It really helped him staying an extra year at Oregon. He has over 1,200 pass attempts in college and you can't teach experience. When it's time for him to play once he's acclimated to the speed of the NFL game and has a good understanding of what NFL defenses are trying to do, I think the sky's the limit.

The starting job isn’t Herbert’s just yet. 

With veteran QB Tyron Taylor still on the team, it could be a little bit of time before we see what Herbert can bring the table.

Still, the keys to the castle are Herbert's for the taking, it's just a matter of when he'll take the throne for good. 

The Oregon Duck is an icon, while Mandrake the RoboDuck could never fly

The Oregon Duck is an icon, while Mandrake the RoboDuck could never fly

The Duck. He's a legend around Eugene and an icon in the mascot world.

Not only is he loved by Ducks fans, but he is also one of the most beloved mascots in all of sports. 

His countless in-game push-ups, wise-quacks and shenanigans are just as much a part of the game as the game itself.

Oregon Athletics just wouldn't be the same without him. 

As Oregon made its ascent to national prominence over the years, The Duck was there to help build the brand. 

His appearances on ESPN Gameday are always sure to bring a laugh, as is his bromance with co-host Lee Corso, and his many commercial spots never get old. 

Yet, for some reason, the school tried to sweep him to the side nearly two decades ago. 

In the latest installment of "Ever Wonder," we explored The Duck's connection to Disney and whether he was related to Donald Duck. 

Around the same time Oregon and Disney distanced itself from its handshake agreement, Mandrake was born. 

It was back in 2002 that out of a giant car-sized egg in the west endzone of Autzen Stadium, RoboDuck appeared. 

Mandrake was new, sleek, and ready to take Oregon to the next level. 

He was Iron Man, meets bodybuilder, meets college mascot. He was everything The Duck wasn't!

The Duck was fluffy. Mandrake was chiseled. 

The Duck was comical. Mandrake was all business.

The Duck was always smiling. Mandrake always looked angry.

The Duck was huggable. Mandrake was just scary.

And although Mandrake looked like a UFC fighter, it's not like The Duck needed protection. He has proved on more than one occasion that he can handle himself. 

Most importantly, The Duck was loved by Oregon fans. Mandrake was not.

[RELATED: Ever wonder if the Oregon Ducks mascot is actually related to Donald Duck?]

Roboduck, as he was called, was never meant to replace The Duck. Rather, he was just meant to be a secondary figure to build the brand around. Heck, he looked a real-life action figure. The merchandise was going to make itself.

But that never came to be. 

As quickly as he hatched from his giant shell, Mandrake scampered into the shadows, out into the Willamette Valley forests. 

He hasn't been seen on campus since 2003, though the school did tease his return in 2013... as an April Fools joke.

As for The Duck. Like a fine wine, he just keeps getting better with age. 

Tyrell Crosby shows off insane physical feat, is not skipping leg day

Tyrell Crosby shows off insane physical feat, is not skipping leg day

Tyrell Crosby is a big dude. The Detroit Lions offensive tackle is 6-foot-5 and weighs in at 309 pounds. 

While the Lions are waiting for the go-ahead to re-open their Allen Park practice facility due to the coronavirus pandemic, players are finding unique ways to get a workout in. Crosby is no exception. 

Crosby recently showed off his physique in a video on Twitter, where he jumped out of the pool and onto the concrete without using arms. Yes, the big man has hops-- a 48” vertical to be precise.

Take a look: 

The former Oregon standout Crosby was taken by the Lions in the fifth round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He’s poised to have a huge role on Detroit’s o-line in the future, despite playing just 26 NFL games while starting seven. 

Crosby established himself as a starter with the Ducks during his sophomore year, but he broke his foot in the third game of the 2016 season, ending his junior campaign. He returned for his senior year and did not allow a single sack or hit on his quarterback for the entire 2017 season, securing the Morris Trophy for the Pac-12’s best offensive lineman in the process. 

Until the NFL resumes, Crosby is staying in and staying safe. In a recent Q&A with the Lions, the 24-year-old said he was enjoying homemade pasta and BBQ, and working out by curling Costco cases of water. His latest video proves he’s also been reaping the benefits of leg day.  

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Oregon Strength & Conditioning Coach Aaron Feld.

Payton Pritchard wins Bill Hayward Male Amateur Athlete of the Year


Payton Pritchard wins Bill Hayward Male Amateur Athlete of the Year

Payton Pritchard from The University of Oregon is your Bill Hayward Male Amateur Athlete of the Year!

In case you needed to be a reminder of what Pritchard has done over his basketball career as a Duck:

Pritchard was the Lute Olson Award (Top Division I player) and Bob Cousy Award (Top point guard) winner, named Pac-12 Player of the Year and USBWA District IX Player of the Year, a consensus AP All-American, Pritchard was named to 13 different All-American teams and is the first Duck to earn AP 1st-Team All-American honors.

He is also the only player in Pac-12 history with 1,900 points, 600 assists and 500 rebounds in a career.

Last season, Pritchard led the Pac-12 in points (20.5 per game) and assists (5.6) and was the only major college player to average over 20 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 assists per game and helped guide the Ducks to a 24-7 record and Pac-12 regular-season title. The season, however, was canceled prior to the NCAA Tournament due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 


Ever wonder if the Oregon Ducks mascot is actually related to Donald Duck?

Ever wonder if the Oregon Ducks mascot is actually related to Donald Duck?

The Duck, don’t call him Puddles, is one of the most beloved mascots around the country.

But have you ever wondered if he is related to Donald Duck?

He does have that loveable Disney feel and yes, there’s a reason for it.

The University’s first athletic director Leo Harris made it a goal to have an official representation of a Duck as the mascot.

And Walt Disney was involved.  

Harris had a friendship with a Disney cartoonist, which helped him and Mr. Disney reach an informal agreement, which some say was just a handshake, back in 1947 that made the grumpy and famous duck the school’s mascot.

It would make sense that Donald was Oregon’s true first mascot after thinking about all the various battles between him and Benny the Beaver at Oregon State.

Donald Duck has a mean streak in him after all.

In 2010, Disney and the University of Oregon agreed to disassociate Donald from the Duck with both parties agreeing that the current version of the Duck didn’t closely resemble Donald Duck enough to be subject to the Disney trademark.

So, maybe you could say the current Duck is a distant cousin of Donald?

Oh, and don't forget, his name isn't Puddles.

However, there was a Puddles... In the 1920s, "Puddles," a resident of the nearby Millrace, was Oregon's first LIVE mascot.

He made his way to football and basketball games and was part of the Duck sports scene until the early 1940s.

And then there’s Mandrake, the RoboDuck...

In 2002, the school decided to adopt a new-sleeker mascot with bulging muscles.

Mandrake was definitely a less huggable mascot.

He couldn’t fly and he didn’t fly with Oregon Duck fans.

Mandrake’s last appearance came in 2003 at a basketball game, and since then fans realized just how much The Duck could never be replaced.

North Dakota State could upset Oregon in season opener

North Dakota State could upset Oregon in season opener

We are just three months out from the hopeful start of the college football season, and there are still many unknowns for Oregon Football. 

The Ducks finished the 2019 season with a 12-2 record, captured the Pac-12 title and are fresh off a Rose Bowl victory over the Wisconsin Badgers. Oregon, however, lost many of its offensive stalwarts in quarterback Justin Herbert, tight end Jacob Breeland, wide receiver Juwan Johnson, and four starters along the offensive line. 

Oregon will open its football season on September 5 against the FCS champion North Dakota State. But not everyone is convinced a Ducks win will come easy. CBS Sports writer Ben Kercheval listed the Oregon season opener as one of his potential trap games in which underdog North Dakota State could shake up the college football picture.  

Here’s what he had to say on the potential Oregon upset:  

North Dakota State has won its last six games against FBS opponents dating back the last decade. None of them were as notable as a potential victory over Oregon projects to be in 2020 --Iowa ranked No. 13 at the time of their game in 2016 -- but this is still a precarious spot for the Ducks. Expectations are high even without star quarterback Justin Herbert and a home game against what could be a top-ranked Ohio State on the calendar for the following week. To be sure, this isn't a look-ahead game for Oregon; as eight-time NCAA Division I national champs last decade, nobody's sleeping on the Bison. Still, Oregon is breaking in a new quarterback (perhaps Anthony Brown from Boston College) and loses some key pieces along the offensive line. 

While Kercheval credited the Ducks as the more skilled team, he noted North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance, who is fresh off a 1,000-yard rushing season, could be the game-changer in the matchup. 

Oregon has a clear edge talent-wise, but the name to watch for North Dakota State will be quarterback Trey Lance, who had 2,786 yards passing and 1,100 yards rushing along with 42 total touchdowns in 2019. Lance is getting some early 2021 NFL Draft buzz as well. On paper, this game should be a win for Oregon, maybe even by a comfortable margin. Be careful, though, Ducks. Scheduling North Dakota State has not gone well for FBS teams recently. 

What Kercheval failed to point out is that while Oregon faces some major rebuilds on the offensive side of the ball, the Ducks will return lineman Penei Sewell, who many speculate will be a Top-5 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft and Heisman Trophy candidate, as well as key contributors like running back CJ Verdell and wide receiver Johnny Johnson III. 

The defense, however, didn't need a major facelift. Oregon has Kayvon Thibodeaux, a potential No.1 pick in 2022, as well as Rose Bowl Defensive MVP Brady Breeze, cornerbacks Thomas Graham and Deommodore Lenoir and defensive lineman Jordon Scott and Austin Faoliu. Not to mention the talent at linebacker in this 2020 class, highlighted by five-star recruit Justin Flowe.

It’s difficult to speculate on what Oregon’s team will look like in 100 days, especially since in-person voluntary workouts cannot resume until at least June 15. What we do know is Coach Mario Cristobal said his team was already developing a strong team culture. He also made it clear his Ducks will be ready to compete when that time comes. 

Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Oregon Strength & Conditioning Coach Aaron Feld.