Oregon point guard Johnathan Loyd, who started and averaged 25.5 minutes, 7.0 points and led the Ducks with 4.7 assists as a senior this past season, is practicing as a wide receiver with the school's football team this spring and can join the roster as a fifth-year player in 2014.
Here is an Instagram photo of Loyd working out with the team, courtesy of GoDucks.com editor Rob Moseley:
This is a bit confusing since Loyd was a senior in basketball this season and is not able to play hoops in 2014. On that front, Moseley clarified with a tweet, explaining that college athletes all get five years of athletic eligibility, and that Loyd is only not allowed to play basketball because he did not redshirt in that sport during his career:
Athletes have a five-year competition window. Loyd didn't redshirt in hoops so still has another full year for other sports. @CamStuerle— Rob Moseley (@DuckFootball) April 7, 2014
Loyd is 5'8'' but was able to compensate for his height with speed, agility, quickness and pluck during his time with the UO basketball team. He'll still be undersized in football, but he won't be abundantly undersized, so perhaps his time working against Pac-12 basketball players and in the NCAA tournament will play to his advantage.
According to his official school bio, Loyd was a prep football star at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, helping lead the team to a 4A state title his senior season. He was named a first-team all-state return man in 2009, averaging 32.6 yards per kick return and taking five back for touchdowns.
It appears Loyd will try his hand at receiver, though his realistic contributions will likely be bigger on special teams. Even without Josh Huff and Daryle Hawkins in 2014, the Ducks have recruited well at the skill positions, and the players ahead of Loyd on the depth chart have not had the hurdle of a hiatus from football.
As a return man, though, Loyd's pure speed will not be behind much of a coaching curve, and his addition to the roster is the definition of a low-risk, high-reward proposition.
It's also just pretty darn cool.
Follow Brian Leigh on Twitter: @BLeighDAT