It's July 14, 2012. Clearly anyone with a cell phone, watch, TV or internet can tell you the date.
Tyner was Oregon's first commit of 2013.
But the date is being used in this instance to make some sense of what is going on in recruiting these days.
There are 207 days left until signing day occurs on Feb. 6, 2013. Everyone of the class of 2013 recruits committed has yet to play a single snap of high school football as a senior for their team.
Out of the top 100 players in the 247Sports top 100, there are only 30 uncommitted players today. There are only 83 in the entire top 247.
You don't have to be a mathematics major to quickly calculate that's around two-thirds of the top 247 players in the nation are already committed. Once again, it's July 14.
Oregon fans are accustomed to late offers and late commitments in terms of Oregon recruiting. The recruiting has increased under Chip Kelly's tenure. The athletes are faster, stronger and ready to make an early impact.
There is absolutely to believe the long-tenured staff and Chip Kelly could cool on the recruiting trail after signing several recent quality classes. Clearly, Oregon won't be USC junior. The Trojans are firmly entrenched as the bell of the Pac-12 given tradition and location.
Argue against this all you want, but facts are facts and the Trojans will have their pick of the litter year in and year out.
That isn't new.
Texas had ten commits by March.
What is new and could be an alarming trend are the early commitments taking place around the country. The top players are committing earlier and earlier in order to 'secure' a spot with their favorite program.
It's ironic in itself as most of these top players aren't the type of player coaches would refuse if they are 'full.' There isn't a coach in the country that would turn away a player the caliber of an Eddie Vanderdoes or Robert Nkemdiche.
Why am I reading this on an Oregon-based fan site?
Unless you are a casual recruiting junkie you know Oregon is extensive in their research of recruits before offering. Very few offers are made before the Spring evaluation period. This isn't new, it's how Chip Kelly handles things.
When the early evaluation period kicks off, the staff hits the road and makes a fair amount of offers in a short period. It isn't a case of them not identifying talent, simply Chip is big on character and the staff puts an emphasis on this aspect. It's how they do it and that won't change.
Oregon had one class of 2013 commitment before March, when the Spring evaluation period began. Alabama had six. Texas had ten. Michigan had eleven.
Does this mean Oregon needs to change?
It's pretty hard to argue with the success under Chip Kelly. Geographically, Oregon is at a huge disadvantage. Unless Phil Knight moves the entire university to a talent-rich area, this will always be the case.
Will Chip Kelly need to adapt to the string of early commits?
There are already nine commitments in the class of 2014 top 100. Yep, only nine. Wait, these are kids that haven't played a single down of a junior year of high school football. They don't sign paperwork to this committed school for a year and a half.
In a year and a half it's possible half of those nine commits may have a new head coach at the school they are verbally committed to. They have two seasons of football left to play.
My point is this, it's worked so far for Chip Kelly and staff. No debate. But your best business minds have to be ahead of the curve. They have to see the next move before it happens, before it's too late.
I don't feel like this will apply to the class of 2013. There are still enough of their top options left on the board and Oregon is in range on quite a few.
However with no offers yet extended to the class of 2014 recruits, and the current trend of early commitments, it's possible a change may need to be made.
Oregon may feel a pinch to make offers sooner, especially given the geographical disadvantage. This is something to keep an eye on as the season approaches and official and unofficial visitors head to Autzen stadium.
There may not be some extreme changes at first, but keep an eye on this shift in recruiting and how the Oregon staff responds.
Is a change needed? Will Oregon change? Is an early signing period in sight? Does this help or hurt Oregon?
Weigh in your thoughts below with other Oregon fans...
Already have an account? Sign In