Marcus Arroyo is leaving the University of Oregon football program at just the right time.
I can’t think of a better time for this to happen to the Ducks. I have no idea how much they will miss him on the recruiting side of the game – time will tell about that.
But I’m pretty confident they can find an offensive coordinator who can move the ball and score points as well as Arroyo did.
And remember, Arroyo has had a quarterback, Justin Herbert, who is expected to be a first-round pick in the NFL draft.
I’ve never been sure that the Ducks got as much out of Herbert as they should have gotten. They always seemed to be torn between wanting to be a power-running team and being a pass-first team. Either would have been OK, but they often didn’t hit on the right balance. And to be fair to them, it was incumbent upon them to play a style most suitable to Herbert's talents, even if it was counter to their long-term philosophy.
And that could have been attributed to the head coach, too. All I know is that, quite often, the offense did not live up to expectations, considering the line and the quarterback behind it.
Now, though, Mario Cristobal has his chance to shape the offense just the way he wants to, with the hiring of a new offensive coordinator.
I wouldn’t at all be surprised to see Oregon go to a more option-oriented attack with a quarterback who is more of a running threat than pure passer. It would seem to fit with Cristobal's perceived vision of a physical offensive line being able to control games with ball control to benefit a stingy defense.
And with Herbert gone, the way is cleared now to recruit toward that style of play -- or any other style he wishes. I think, too, he will have the resources to hire a big name and/or a proven commodity.
That’s why the time is right for a change. A change in coaches, in philosophy and perhaps even personnel.