Our Oregon Ducks football team has been surrounded by an embarrassment of superstars all over the offense in 2023.
While the defense has more than done its part to become one of the most stifling groups in the conference, the offense cannot be stopped after averaging just over 48.1 points per game (ppg) over the first 10 weeks.
Even while sitting at 48.1 ppg, what’s really gotten Oregon fans excited this season hasn’t been the elite rushing attack or formidable offensive line play. Bo Nix and Troy Franklin have stolen the show week after week. Long-bomb touchdowns, crucial third downs, and a healthy season total of 16.3 yards per catch—there’s a ton of numbers to LOVE about his season so far for the Nix-to-Franklin connection.
Franklin’s Current Receiving Total
Franklin has already surpassed his entire 2022 season total in yards and touchdowns, sitting at 946 yards with 10 touchdowns in 2023 to his previous 891 and 9 touchdowns. With three games left on the schedule, there’s plenty of time for Franklin to further his total to upwards of 1300 yards. This kind of total would not only help the team push for a College Football Playoff appearance but also accomplish a lot for recruiting.
How Does Franklin Impact Oregon’s Recruiting Future?
After putting up numbers like these, it’s clear that Oregon can support a true number-one receiver with catches, opportunities, and visibility to the NFL. As a top contender sitting at sixth in the country, the offense-centric buzz of Ducks football mirrors that of the 2014 season and other all-time years led by Mark Helfrich, Chip Kelly, and co.
Even though Marvin Harrison Jr. of Ohio State is clearly the top receiver pick in next year’s NFL Draft, Franklin seems to genuinely be challenging him among his peers. This is OUTSTANDING for the Ducks’ recruiting future. Continuously producing first-round talent every year is a crucial element of every great recruiter’s pitch. Luckily, Lanning’s got us covered, elevating Oregon to be a top school for future receivers to flock towards and join in years to come.
Matchup vs USC
USC’s struggling secondary is the prime matchup for Nix to lead touchdown drives with ease. Bucky Irving and Jordan James are sure to get their touches, but there’s no reason for Nix to shy away from trying the Trojans early downfield. Fortunately for Nix, Franklin isn’t the only other consistent receiving threat outside the numbers anymore.
Last week, Tez Johnson emerged to a much larger role in the offense, which opened doors for Franklin to produce late. Together, this tandem could be exceptionally special down the stretch, creating matchup nightmares for College Football Playoff opponents. With Franklin leading the way, 14+ touchdowns and 1,300+ receiving yards seem completely in bounds to me. That’s a great season to hang your hat on, and well over what I would have EVER expected of him entering this season. What a time to be a Ducks fan, huh?
Anyway, enough from me Oregon fans. How well do you think Franklin can finish out this season? Is he a bonified first-round pick, or can you see him slipping to the second round? Who’s going to be the x-factor receiver across from him down the stretch, Tez Johnson, or someone else? Let us know in the FishDuck Forum with decorum.
Los Angeles, California
Top Photo By: Steven Chan
Alex Heining is an Oregon alumni from the graduate class of 2021. After studying sports business and media studies, he has moved into the field of digital marketing as a copywriter and content manager in the Los Angeles area. Still, he loves his Ducks and goes to local high school games all over the Los Angeles and Orange County area to check out new recruits of the future (and a SoFi game or two with the pros). On any given Saturday, expect to find him doing martial arts, playing the guitar, or screaming at the tv over a missed holding penalty.
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