For the fourth time in the last five years, the Ducks land a 5 star running back recruit. Hailing from Imperial, California, Royce Freeman chose the Ducks over Pac-12 rivals USC and UCLA, as well as national contenders such as Florida and Alabama.
Freeman rushed for an impressive 2,482 yards, accumulated 34 touchdowns as a junior, and will probably only improve on those statistics next season. Freeman also has impressive measurements. The back is 6’0 tall 227 and posted a sub 4.6 40 time.
But Freeman hadn’t reached 5 star status until his eye opening performance at The Open in Beaverton where he won the MVP among running backs and solidified himself as one of the best RBs in the nation. Freeman was not only the first running back signing by the Ducks in the 2014 class but the first five star recruit as well.
Freeman’s talent is apparent in his highlight tape. While not possessing blazing speed, he has incredible balance and power, consistently bouncing off tacklers or throwing them to the ground and then continuing his momentum forward. One of his highlights features a Reggie Bush style zig-zag from one edge of the field to the other while avoiding a bevy of defenders in the process.
It’s difficult to argue against Oregon’s title as “Running Back U.” After landing LaMichael James and Kenjon Barner in 2008, the Ducks signed De’Anthony Thomas in 2010 and Byron Marshall in 2012. Not to mention their acquisition of highly touted recruit Lache Seastrunk in 2010, who couldn’t see the light of day in the Ducks’ hyper-competitive RB rotation.
Let’s hope that in a few years, Freeman can continue the legacy.