Taking a page from men’s basketball coach Dana Altman, linebackers headman Erik Chinander is looking north of the border to add to Eugene’s football wealth.
Following a weekend visit, tabbed athlete Chase Claypool (NR/Abbotsford, BC) received a nod from Lightning Yellow and Thunder Green.
“Oregon was pretty much the dream offer I wanted,” said Claypool. “I did a lot of my research before going down and Oregon checked out. I was really looking to see what the town was like and how the coaches interact with one another. They were great. Always joking around and calling each other nicknames and stuff. You can tell they are all tight with each other.”
In an area not necessarily known for American football, Claypool has developed his 6-foot-5, 205 lb. frame into an all-around playmaking machine while lining up all over the field.
“I liked practice the most about the whole trip. It was real high intensity and they were flying around, after (all that) they went back to being friends and stuff. The coaches told me I would fit in like Boseko (Lokombo), kind of a linebacker, safety hybrid. But they also said they would give me a shot at wide receiver if I want to.”
To view Claypool highlights, please click here.
Shifting to the hardwood, the aforementioned Altman secured one of the top talents in the class of 2016 in forward Keith Smith (4-Star/Seattle, WA/Rivals150).
Previously committed to San Diego State, Smith opened up his recruitment and made his pledge to become a Duck last Friday.
“I wasn’t getting the right answers about some concerns I had with San Diego State and I felt like I needed to open things up,” said Smith. “I just wasn’t liking the style of play down there, and seeing what Oregon is doing I was interested.”
At 6-foot-7, 190 lbs., Smith has a smooth jumper to couple with a fearsome drive to the hoop.
“My Dad and I went down and this was actually our second visit since I went down there during the winter,” Smith said. “This time I got a chance to spend more time with players, coaches, and see the campus and campus life.”
That chance to see the inside of Oregon Basketball was revealed to be the ace-in-the-hole for Altman’s pitch and will bring the top prep in the state of Washington to Oregon.
“I feel like they are close to having things pop off. They’ve got a really good recruiting class coming in for 2015, a good group coming back, and then I think we’re gonna finish well in my class.”
Top photo by Craig Strobeck