With the departure of key components of the offensive line it was important that the Ducks secure a strong offensive line class in order to ensure the continuing success of the offense. The most exciting recruit for the line is Zach Okun the 6-3, 340 lb guard from Southern California.
Okun had verbally committed nearly a year ago on an unofficial visit to Eugene. When he enrolled at Oregon for the beginning of the winter term, we had confirmation that we would see the four star prospect swathed in green and yellow. Okun was heavily recruited by the Pac-12, receiving offers from eight teams, including UCLA and Cal.
247 Sports places Okun as the 14th best offensive guard and 31st best prospect in California. Okun enjoyed the distinction of being a U.S. Army All-American Bowl selection, and helping his team average 183.4 yards on the ground and rack up 32 touchdowns. His nine out of ten score for run blocking is encouraging, opening up gaps for the monster Royce Freeman or the speedster Tony James will be a key component for the 2015-2016 season.
Derrell Warren, a West Coast Recruiting Analyst reported for SB Nation back in May on Okun’s short-area quickness for his size, “He rises quickly out of his stance and delivers a powerful initial punch as a run blocker.” His speed will be a benefit in pass protection as well, “he also displays lateral quickness” Warren explained “Okun shows very quick hands and the ability to latch onto a defensive lineman, disengage… and reload his hands to engage linebackers in space.”
Warren predicts that Okun will have to redshirt his freshman season in order to “slim down and reshape his frame” but that valuable time spent with the team is sure to mold him into an incredible young talent for the Ducks.
Top Photo by Kevin Cline