Sports Illustrated recently released their list of the top 100 players for the 2019 season, regardless of class. Several Ducks made the list and the conference did well. So who made it and where? You can find the full list below:
By the numbers
The Pac-12 had 17 players represented on the list. Of those 17, Utah led the conference with FOUR, followed by THREE by the Huskies.
By position, it breaks down like this: four running backs, four offensive linemen, two quarterbacks, two cornerbacks, two defensive linemen, two linebackers, and one receiver.
The Ducks had two of the highest ranked players in the conference with QB Justin Herbert and OT Penei Sewell. OL Calvin Throckmorton just missed and was listed under the Snubs list.
Who are the chosen 17?
11. Justin Herbert QB Oregon
12. Laviska Shenault WR Colorado
13. Penei Sewell OT Oregon
22. Bradlee Anae EDGE Utah
25. Trey Adams OL Washington
36. Walker Little OL Stanford
42. Eno Benjamin RB Arizona State
51. Jaylon Johnson CB Utah
54. Evan Weaver LB Cal
59. Jermar Jefferson RB Oregon State
64. J.J. Taylor RB Arizona
70. Nick Harris OL Washington
72. Khalil Tate QB Arizona
77. Leki Fotu DL Utah
85. Troy Dye LB Oregon
88. Zack Moss RB Utah
89. Myles Bryant CB Washington
What is SI saying about the Ducks?
Here’s the quote from SI on Herbert:
“Herbert, who decided to forego the NFL draft last spring despite the fact that he might have been the top pick, may have the best arm in college football, and that should be on display for a high-flying Oregon offense this fall. In 2018, his first full season starting, Herbert threw for 3,151 yards, including 29 touchdowns to just eight interceptions. Sure, the Ducks will have to replace his top receiver, Dillon Mitchell, but they’re returning a ton of offensive talent that should pave the way for Herbert to pick up right where he left off last season and lead Oregon to its first Pac-12 title since 2014.”
“Last fall Sewell became the first Oregon freshman offensive lineman to start a season opener since 1997. After starting the first six games for the Ducks, and protecting star QB Justin Herbert’s blind side, Sewell sustained an injury to his right leg against Washington and was out six weeks. He did not return until Oregon’s bowl game vs. Michigan State, which the Ducks won 7–6. The 6’6”, 345-pounder is back and healthy now and had a solid spring. He will be a cornerstone piece in what should be the strongest and most experienced offensive line in the Pac-12 this fall.”
“Dye has been a tackling machine since he stepped foot on Oregon’s campus, posting 90 or more tackles in each of his first three seasons, including 109 in 2018. He’s one of just two players in FBS to lead his team in tackles the last three seasons. Dye’s ability to play the pass and the run has helped him succeed in a conference loaded with spread offenses. Justin Herbert gets all the attention on Oregon’s offense, but don’t forget about the guy quarterbacking the Ducks’ defense.”
I found it interesting that OSU’s Jermar Jefferson ranked higher than J.J. Taylor as the Beavers clearly weren’t any better than the Wildcats.
Washington OL Trey Adams ranked that high despite being injured for most of last season is comical. Current Atlanta Falcons tackle Kaleb McGary should send him a gift basket for getting drafted in the first round.
Myles Bryant should’ve been ranked higher than he was. He was one of the better corners in the conference last season.
Shenault being 12th is certainly interesting. He’s been victimized by a run of bad quarterback play but to rank higher than most receivers is high praise.
Speaking of high praise, Sewell being one of the top ranked tackles speaks of his impact on the offensive line. He projects as a franchise left tackle type at the next level if he continues on his current track.
Troy Dye is ranked just right in my opinion as there are better linebackers that could make a bigger impact than he does.
Herbert being ranked as the third quarterback is the right choice as he’s clearly better than Jake Fromm due to a myriad of factors including system fit and offensive responsibility. Both of the quarterbacks ahead of him have won national titles and multiple awards.