There is no off-season in recruiting.
Even the mandated dead periods aren't truly dead for coaches. There is always the next recruit on the list, the next scholarship offer to hand out, the next new target. So even as the Oregon coaches were preparing for the biggest game in the history of the program, they weren't going to let this opportunity go by without taking advantage of it in recruiting.
The Ducks sent out offers last week to three blue chip 2016 recruits in linebacker Caleb Kelly, tight end/defensive end Devin Asiasi, and linebacker Lyndell Wilson. They also became the first national offers for two other targets in linebacker Arman Jones and defensive lineman Thomas Schaffer.
I realize it's that time of year where film is just getting out to certain coaching staffs, but I don't think it's a coincidence that Oregon sent those specific offers out last week. As much as we like to think that recruits are watching games every Saturday, they aren't. They are too busy being teenagers to watch most games. That means games like the Rose Bowl against Florida State and the national championship game versus Ohio State might be the only exposure they get watching Oregon all season. It seems the Ducks are correctly parlaying that exposure to get the attention of some top targets for their next recruiting cycle.
They are already seeing the benefits in this current recruiting class in a big way. They stole away former LSU cornerback commit Ugo Amadi by simply being Oregon. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it's the truth.
After defensive coordinator John Chavis left LSU for Texas A&M, that left Amadi open again with his recruitment. Then the Ducks thrashing of the Seminoles on New Year's Day happened. The Oregonian's Andrew Nemec spoke with Amadi and found out that was the catalyst for the Ducks being involved:
Forced to scramble to find a school, Amadi was blown away by the Ducks' performance in the Rose Bowl, and admits it created the intrigue for him to reach out to Oregon last week.
Then it basically went like this: Oregon offered. Amadi committed without even visiting Eugene. Now Amadi is enrolling early and starting classes at Oregon on Wednesday.
That's the power of the college football playoff in recruiting. None of that is happening if Oregon is playing in the Holiday Bowl, that's for sure.
That's an extreme case that isn't going to happen very often, but the Ducks are still going to ride their on-field success in recruiting all the way to signing day. In addition to adding another explosive athlete like Amadi, they are still in the hunt for 5 star defensive tackle Rasheem Green and are going to have a chance to swing 5 star cornerback Iman Marshall away from USC on an official visit later this month.
Like I said, there is no off-season in recruiting. With the momentum that Oregon's program has right now, it's going to enable them to ratchet up the tempo, just like they do on the field.
- Stanford lost a commitment from 4 star linebacker Christian Folau earlier this cycle due to admission issues, but have gained a commitment from former Washington State offensive tackle commit Austen Maihen now that he's been admitted into school. He's no Andrus Peat in terms of potential, but the Cardinal certainly know how to develop offensive linemen.
This is a pretty common story for Stanford when it comes to recruits. They are going to win some and lose some when it comes to admissions.
- They certainly won big when it came to getting a commitment from 4 star wide receiver Trent Irwin. Just about everyone thought he was joining his high school quarterback Brady White at Arizona State.
Even though he is considered a blue chip recruit, Irwin may be underrated given how consistently productive he has been when competing against other top players from around the nation. He's going to catch a lot of footballs for Stanford and is good enough to play very early in his career.
- Just when I wrote that everything was coming up Milhouse for David Shaw, 4 star safety Arrington Farrar goes and decommits last night. Having Ben Edwards and being in favorable positions for Justin Reid and Frank Buncom IV might make this sting a little less, but it's still a step back for their recruiting class.
4-star GA DB Arrington Farrar de-committed from #Stanford last night pic.twitter.com/jY8wVi1NCi— Mike Farrell (@rivalsmike) January 12, 2015
- Wazzu might have lost Maihen, but they got a commitment from a player with much greater upside when former Louisville commit Dahu Green flipped to the Cougars. There are receivers that are more sudden athletically than Green in the 2015 recruiting class, but there are very few that have better ball skills than him.
He has all the tools to develop into a big time red zone threat in Mike Leach's offense.
- I hope Oregon State fans enjoyed Sean Mannion, because they aren't likely to see many more quarterbacks like him while Gary Andersen is running the program. Andersen had his greatest success at Utah State when he had a dual threat in Chuckie Keaton and it looks like he is looking for something more similar to that than being stuck with another Joel Stave type. That's why it's not surprising to see him grab a commitment from former San Jose State commit Seth Collins.
Collins is an electric athlete as a dual threat quarterback that is more likely to damage with his feet right now than his arm. If he can develop in the pocket, then he'll have a very bright future with the Beavers.
Andersen also got a commitment from another dual threat quarterback in former Utah commit Tuli Wily-Matagi, although he is likely to switch positions at the next level to either tight end or defensive end. (He's 6'3" 230 right now.)
Him flipping to the Beavers is likely a product of Kalani Sitake coming to Oregon State. Sitake was Wily-Matagi's main recruiter when Sitake was at Utah.
- Trent Irwin was the only new commitment at at Pac-12 school last week that wasn't previously committed to another school. It's not excessive. It's just a sign of the times in recruiting.