According to SportingNews.com, the Oregon Ducks are the most popular team for high school kids looking to play college football.
This survey examined slightly over 100 students in the 2013 recruiting class that are looking at schools of the BCS caliber. The players seemed to be overwhelmingly infatuated with the University of Oregon, and for good reason.
Oregon received a leading 17 votes to the question: “If you were granted one extra official visit and you could take it to any school you wanted, where you would you go?” which beat out USC and Hawaii.
Both received 11 votes. That means that these recruits would rather spend a rainy day in the Pacific Northwest than in the exotic Hawaiian island or the beautifully sunny Los Angeles, CA. But why?
“I just think Oregon is cool with all the Nike stuff,” said one recruit, according to OregonLive.com.
“I’m just curious about Oregon,” added another. “I like how they play, and I like their stadium.”
The Oregon Ducks have already secured the nation's No. 1 overall running back recruit, Thomas Tyner, for 2013's recruiting class and pulled in 6'8" offensive/defensive lineman Arik Armstead for the 2012 recruit class.
They also boast four-star recruits Bralon Addison (wide receiver), Jake Rodrigues (QB), Dwayne Stanford II (WR) and DeForest Buckner (DE). Bleacher Report ranked Oregon's recruiting class in the Top 20, as did ESPN.com's list.
Of course, this is just the newest report that Oregon is your “favorite team’s favorite team,” as Supwitchugirl once sang.
In a recent poll on the Twitter handle @SmartFootball: “What team do you most like watching, even though you have no formal ties?”
“Early results seem to favor Oregon,” he tweeted. “My expected pick.”
Why wouldn’t it be expected? That's what the University of Oregon Athletic Department has created. As many of Oregon officials and fans have been tweeting, the Oregon Ducks have become an international brand.
The Oregon Ducks drive online media content like very few other schools. Every day, there's something to post about with regards Oregon Ducks sports.
I've spent far too much time on Twitter under the #GoDucks Twitter handle. I've also spent enough time to learn that certain schools have begun to, for lack of a better phrase, copy our style.
Even the most basic research showed that Ole Miss copied Oregon’s “Win The Day” motto and placed it in their locker room. Even Pac-12 North rival Washington State is using “Win The Day” to advertise for their game against Oregon in Seattle, and...you guessed it...Indiana University is using “Win The Day” as a slogan as well.
Before that, Dwyane Wade was spotted wearing Oregon Ducks basketball shoes despite no affiliation with the university. We’ve also seen Jack Black rock Oregon gear this summer. They only add to the list of famous celebrities (e.g. Dave Chappelle who came through Eugene, Oregon this summer) that have made the school a happening place to be for sports.
Eugene is a deceptive place. It's cold in the winter and hot in the summer. But despite the fact that it's a small college town two hours away from the nearest "big city," it has often been known as a cultural haven.
Famous author of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and former English major Ken Kesey went to the school, as did author of Fight Club and former journalism student Chuck Pahlahniuk. The Grateful Dead used to hang out in Eugene. And so does the artist formerly known as Snoop Dogg (now to be referred to as Snoop Lion, for your information) today.
As recently as last football season, fans like myself saw the likes of LeBron James, Chris Paul, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony attend an Oregon Ducks football game and play catch in front of the student section.
And we haven't even covered anything about the relationship that Nike CEO and Oregon alum Phil Knight has had with the institution, recently purchasing a $68 million football operations center.
This is hardly a recruiting pitch. These are simply facts that it would be foolish to ignore.
At this point, it’s hardly even surprising to learn that Oregon is a beloved international brand. That’s what keeps us relevant in the media market across the world. But it’s fans at the school that keep us as powerful of a school as we are for sports.
Oregon is your favorites team’s favorite team because of the passion that the fans have on campus. They deliver the college experience down to the wildness of sports that we so often crave. The university has a lot to thank the students for...they've helped to become the best fans in the country.
As football season keeps getting closer every day, Oregon Ducks fans can globally get prepared to say one thing: Go Ducks.
Bryan Kalbrosky is an Oregon Ducks F/C and also writes for the New York Mets and the Trends N Topics Team at Bleacher Report. Aside for Bleacher Report, he is the social media manager and runs the website that he designed for the Oregon Ducks student section, The Pit Crew. Be sure to click here for great content on Oregon Ducks sporting events on the Pit Crew Blog. Some information from this article was taken from The Pit Crew Blog, which is run by the author of this article.
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