Hoiem decision leaves Ducks with scholarship to give at LB: who’s “the next man in?”

Justin Hopkins of Duck Territory and Rob Cassidy of Duck Sports Authority reported this afternoon that 4-star Oregon verbal commit Jordan Hoiem has confirmed his decision to quit football altogether. Hoiem, 6-4, 205-lb. linebacker from Baldwin High School on the island of Maui, told Cassidy, “I just don’t enjoy football like I used to.”

It’s a decision that will reverberate throughout his young life, particularly since he has trained seriously since the 8th grade for his shot at the Division One ranks. Hoiem’s highlight video showed outstanding agressiveness and instincts for the linebacker position, but given the encompassing demands of big-time football with year-round training and the constant pressure to compete in practice, workouts, and the weight room, he simply can’t be blamed for listening to his own heart. Hoiem did not elaborate on his decision, and certainly, absolutely, it’s his to make.

There is still time before the start of the high school season and National Signing Day for the athletic senior to reconsider. Per NCAA rules, Duck coaches can’t comment on the status of any recruit but it’s certain they’ll now have to reevaluate and reconsider their options at linebacker. 

The Ducks lost a trio of linebackers to graduation this spring, Michael Clay, Kiko Alonso and Dion Jordan. On National Signing Day they took three excellent prospects that are slated at the linebacker spot: Spokane’s Danny Mattingly (6-5, 222), Torrodney Prevot (6-3, 214) from Texas, and Tyrell Robinson (6-4, 201).

Sophomore Christian French, with good size (6-5, 242) and speed, made a nice showing in the Spring Game, leading the defense with 9 tackles and a sack. He was a standout safety and basketball star in high school who ran a 10.68 100 meters in track. He is an athletic package to rival Dion Jordan if he can demonstrate the consistency and work ethic of The Preying Mantis, who made bank this spring as the #3 overall draft pick.

The Ducks need to pick up at least two linebackers in this class, and one possibility is Joey Alfieri of Jesuit High School, a 6-3, 215-lb. senior, who’s been moving up recruiting boards after a good season in summer camps. Alfieri turned heads with a top ten finish in the SPARQ Championships at The Opening earlier this July on the Nike Campus. Scott Reed of Duck Sports Authority reported:

The impressive numbers Alfieri put up (37.9″ vertical jump, 4.55 40, 4.07 shuttle and 39 foot powerball toss) are sure to impress more universities around the nation and possibly create some momentum for Alfieri on the recruiting trail.

Alfieri’s offers include Stanford, Oregon State and Washington. They also include Harvard and Yale. He told Reed his weight is up to 230 lbs. after a growth spurt. His father Phil played at Oregon State and went on to the NFL, but the Crusader says he’s open to offers and will make an independent school decision with the support of his parents.

Jesuit was 12-3 last year behind the work of Alfieri and tight end Henry Mondeaux, who is also a big-time prospect. The fast, versatile linebacker doubled as a running back and receiver, scoring 7 touchdowns on the year.

He talks to Mike Richman of oregonlive.com about his recruiting in the video below, and reveals he’s now getting interest from Ohio State: