For Valentine’s Day, the Oregon coaches should be sending love to Jacob Daniel

If there’s one must-get recruit in the 2015 class, it’s  four-star defensive tackle Jacob Daniel of Clovis North High School in Fresno.

He’s 6-5 300 pounds, mobile, agile and agressive. He dominates the line of scrimmage, pushes opponents backward and knocks them down. Powerful and quick, he’s a true difference-maker on the defensive front, and as Duck fans have seen, there just aren’t many of them to go around, particularly in the Western United States.

What jumps out about him in the highlight video is the power coupled with non-stop effort. He’s in the Top 100 of every major recruiting service, one of a handful of elite tackles in the entire country.

Daniel originally committed to Washington before the coaching change so distance is not an issue. USC is pursuing him heavily, and coaches Steve Sarkisian and Josh Wilcox already have a relationship with him.

Eye-catching talent: if you went to a high school game at Tom Flores Stadium in October, Jacob Daniel would be the player you’d notice (Craig Moffitt, photo). He’s a rare talent with the ability to dominate a game from the middle of the field.

The Ducks ought to hustle, and get him to Eugene for the Spring Game, and pray for a lovely morning where the azaleas and rhododendrens are in bloom, 45,000 jubilant, enthusiastic people are in the stands and the coeds are in cute shorts and sandals with their toe nails painted green and yellow.

Daniel deserves the full court press and a new coat of paint for the house he visits at. He starts low, coiled like a spring. His arms come up with a powerful blast to the shoulder pads, and sometimes the linemen opposite him are stunned and defeated by the first blow.

Stanford, Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Arizona State have offered, so the Ducks better hurry. This is a young man with rare size and strength, as quick over the first ten yards as anyone in the backfield except a couple of Oregon running backs. He blasts people and uses his hands deftly, with an innate understanding and a hunger to win the battle. He plays like his momma is watching, like the opposing coach just ate the last piece of pie.

No all-night video game sessions if Daniel comes to visit. The Ducks offered him back in September of his junior year and he’s gotten even better since then.  Take him to the Eugene City Bakery for a piece of  marionberry, and show him the all-time highlight reels of Haloti Ngata and Brandon Bair with Autzen Stadium erupting as quarterbacks go skittering to the turf.

The Clovis North Bronco is serious and articulate, and he does boxing workouts with his step dad to improve his footwork and hand-fighting skills.

His team went 11-3 last year, losing to Bakersfield in the championship game of the CIF Central Section playoffs. Daniel was selected to the Cal-HI Sports All-Underclass team first team defense. The team was ranked sixth in the section and beat rival Buchanan twice, inside pressure by Daniel setting up an 80-yard interception return in a 47-26 win in November.

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