This spring we'll be looking at recruiting needs for the 2013 class, starting with offensive line. Warranted or not, offensive line play has been the biggest criticism during Chip Kelly's reign as Oregon head coach. This is due in large part to the Ducks' inability to run the ball as effectively against the bigger and faster defensive lines of out of conference opponents. Criticism of Oregon's O-line play was temporarily muted after they moved the ball at will against Wisconsin's large defensive line, though most people agree that Wisconsin's line wasn't of the same calibre as schools like Ohio State and Auburn.
In addition to the Rose Bowl performance, Oregon addressed the O-line criticism in 2011 by signing what was widely regarded as one of the top 3 offensive line classes in the country. Most of those signees were redshirted last year, though Jake Fisher saw significant time and performed very well as a backup to Nick Cody on the right side. In addition to Cody, Oregon welcomes back Hroniss Grasu and Carson York, two standout starters on the line from a year ago. Fisher and Ryan Clanton expect to compete for starting positions as well, and don't be surprised if they are pushed by one or two redshirt freshman from Oregon's 2011 class, as well as Hamani Stevens, who is returned from a two-year mission, and junior college transfer Kyle Long, who has only one year of eligibility and is expected to play right away.
Regardless of who starts, Oregon's O-line will rotate a lot of players, meaning plenty of playing time for everyone. With so many players seeing time, depth is of paramount importance. Oregon looks deep heading into this season, but recruited only one offensive lineman in 2012, the aforementioned Kyle Long. Because of this offensive line is arguably the most important position of need for the Ducks in the 2013 class. Oregon coaches have been aggressive, offering at least eight offensive lineman already. After the jump, check out a list of O-line players that Oregon is targeting in this recruiting class.
Cameron Dillard OL - Dillard is 6-3 and 280 lbs tackle from Michigan. He has offers from top programs all over the country, including Oregon.
Nico Falah OL - Falah is 6-5, 270 lbs. A four star rated prospect from St. John Bosco in California, he holds offers from nearly every Pac-12 team, as well as several other top programs across the country.
Andrew Kirkland OL - Kirkland is 6-5, 285 lbs and a local kid from Jesuit High School in Portland. Along with Brayden Kearsley and Evan Voeller, he makes up a trio of highly talented and sought after Offensive Lineman in the state of Oregon.
Sean Harlow OL - At 6-5, 260 lbs Harlow has room to add some weight. He has offers from several other Pac-12 schools and played opposite 2012 blue chip recruit, Kyle Murphy, in high school.
Brayden Kearsley OL - Kearsley is committed to BYU but word is that he is still considering other schools, including Oregon. At 6-5, 270 lbs, Kearsley possesses great size with the ability to add more bulk. He is a four star recruit according to Scout.com.
Evan Voeller DL/OL - At 6-5, 285 lbs Voeller is the third in a trio of outstanding offensive lineman in the state of Oregon. He has reportedly already taken a visit to Stanford, and has been offered by most other Pac-12 schools.
Joe Mathis OL - Joe Mathis reportedly has Oregon in his very early top 5. Mathis is a 6-4, 255 lbs four star prospect who could play on either side of the ball. He has offers from nearly every big time program across the country.
Jake Campos OL - Campos is the latest to be offered by Oregon. He is a 6-7, 240 lbs tackle from the state of Iowa and has said that Oregon's pace of play on offense appeals to him. He is also being pursued by several other Big 10 and Big 12 schools.