Ducks, Arizona State also squaring off in the recruiting sweepstakes

Oregon has special guests in town for the Arizona State game, and the fans in Autzen Stadium have a terrific chance to make a great first impression on them.

For tomorrow night’s ESPN telecast, Oregon will have seven of the top recruits in the country in attendance, gamebreaking players that could be difference makers in the seasons to come, each playing key positions where the Ducks want to upgrade their talent for the future. We’ve profiled several of these student-athletes at The Duck Stops Here, so we wanted to provide a capsule on each with a link to the site, where you’ll find video and detailed scouting reports.

D.J. Foster, wide receiver

Foster is a hard-hitting wide receiver and cornerback from Sagauro High in Scottsdale, Arizona, and the Ducks are competing hard with his home-state Sun Devils for his talents. On defense he hits like T.J. Ward, but he’s is such a fast, versatile athlete he’s played quarterback and tailback for his high school team. The Ducks like him as a wide receiver. Think Jeff Maehl with equal toughness and more speed.

Follow this link to read his Duck Stops Here profile.

Ellis McCarthy, defensive tackle

Stud defensive tackles may be the rarest and most valuable commodity in college football. Each recruiting season there are no more than a dozen great, true defensive tackles available in the whole country, and McCarthy is definitely one of them at 6-5, 310 pounds. The Ducks are competing chiefly with Cal and USC for this agile, dominating linemen, who 53 tackles and 14 sacks as a junior. He has offers from top schools all over the country, including Oklahoma and Florida. His video will remind you of the best tackles to wear a Duck uniform, including Haloti Ngata and Igor Olshansky.

Follow this link to read his Duck Stops Here profile.

Bryce Cottrell, linebacker

This 6-3, 225-lb. destroyer from football-crazy Plano, Texas is an outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense with great mobility and 4.6 speed who can run and hit like an Oregon Duck. He’s a cross between Kenny Rowe and Wesley Mallard, athletic with just the right touch of meanness, smart on the field and assertive in collisions, which he is very good at creating. The Ducks appear to be his favorite, and with a good showing and a warm welcome during his visit they could put both the Sun Devils and Cottrell in the win column.

Follow this link to read his Duck Stops Here profile

Reggie Daniels, safety

Daniels is another Arizona product, from state champion Hamilton High in Chandler, Arizona, the same school that brought the Ducks 2011 offensive tackle Tyler Johnstone. He’s a fast and athletic safety, another fierce hitter with great instincts, who has shined at combine events and in the Hamilton secondary.

Stealing the game, Foster and Daniels from Dennis Erickson would be sweet revenge for losing the Civil War in 2000.

Follow this link to read his Duck Stops Here profile.

Jeremy Castro, defensive end

Castro is currently a Washington Husky commit, but most sites put him in the “soft verbal” category. He would be a good one to get a firm phone call from, because he’s a tremendous football player at 6-1, 240. He’s strong and quick, another superlative hitter with a great bullrush and tremendous drive to hunt down the ball. Castro had an amazing 111 tackles as a junior.

Follow this link to read his Duck Stops Here profile.

Thomas Tyner, tailback

Tyner, from Aloha High School in Beaverton, Oregon, ran a 10.38 100 meters at the Metro League Championship track meet last spring. That makes him faster than LaMichael James. He’s powerfully built with a sprinter’s muscled lower body, six feet, 200 pounds. Tyner’s making an unofficial visit for the ASU game, his third this year, and seems to be a strong Oregon lean at this point in his recruiting. He’s only a junior, but such a rare combination of speed and power the Ducks want to get on him early. His offer list is as long as the noses of the NCAA after giving Auburn a pass on recruiting violations.

Follow this link to read his Duck Stops Here profile.

A seventh visitor this weekend to Autzen, Shaq Thompson of Grant High in Sacramento, hasn’t been profile at The Duck Stops Here. He’s a fabulous athlete, the #12 player and #1 rated safety in the country, but up to now he was thought to be a shoo-in for the Cal Bears, close enough his family could attend all his home games. Still, a great visit and an Oregon win might sway him, and the 6-2, 212-pound cruise missile would be a great weapon for John Neal’s secondary. Maybe Thompson will consider how well Oregon products like T.J. Ward, Jairus Byrd, Pat Chung and Keith Lewis have done in the NFL, and how underperforming Cal has been over the last several years.

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