DuckTerritory's "Pick One" series rolls on as we take a look at the Arizona Wildcats' recruiting class and ask Duck fans, "Who is the one recruit you would love to see Oregon have?"
Alford would be a perfect fit for Oregon's offense.
Like Oregon, Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez prefers an uptempo offensive philosophy that floods the field with athletes at virtually every skilled position. Currently, Arizona has 26 total football commits, including one player -- former USC quarterback, Jesse Scroggins -- who has signed a letter of intent.
On the hoof, the Wildcats' class appears to be especially top heavy, with players like Scroggins, four-star running back Pierre Cormier, four-star cornerback Derek Babiash, and three-star athlete Mario Alford already in the fold headlining the class. Arizona also has a commitments from two players who were lightly recruited by the Ducks at one point in three-star quarterback Anu Solomon and three-star wide receiver Samajie Grant. Additionally, the Wildcats have dipped in to the state of Oregon for two of their recruits, as Central Point (Ore.) Crater three-star linebacker Derrick Turituri and three-star safety R.J. Morgan made verbal commitments to Arizona in late June.
Of all the Wildcats' current commitments, Scroggins is the one player who could be a program changer at the quarterback position for Arizona. Blessed with a lethal combination of athleticism and superior arm strength, Scroggins could make the Wildcat offense's transition from senior Matt Scott a seamless one. However, as obvious a choice as Scroggins might be for Duck fans looking to fantasy poach Arizona's class, Oregon's current depth at quarterback doesn't make much sense if you're looking to improve the overall roster.
Three-star athlete Mario Alford -- 5'10", 180 lbs. -- Milledgeville (Ga.) Georgia Military College via Greenville (Ga.)
Lined up as either a running back or wide receiver, Alford is as explosive as they come -- regardless of the level of competition. Alford's speed is his greatest asset, but his ability to change direction and be multi-dimensional would make him an absolute terror in Oregon's interpretation of the spread no-huddle. Though he has a ways to go before reaching his status, Alford's athletic gifts are reminiscent of West Virginia's Tavon Austin and I'd expect Alford -- at worst -- to be a force in the return game for the Wildcats barring any hangups in making the move to the Division I/FBS level.
Similar to Austin, Alford's biggest issue might be his lack of size, but if you're an Oregon fan, what does that really matter? Guys like Alford were built to play in wide-open, multi-pronged offensive systems where their speed and agility holds far greater value than their ability to out-physical their opponent. He may be headed to Tucson, but Duck fans could daydream the endless possibilities Alford's efforts could provide when combined with the exploits of De'Anthony Thomas, Josh Huff, Colt Lyerla and the cadre of athletes representing the Oregon offense next season.
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