Vernon Adams Heads To Oregon, Favorite To Replace Marcus Mariota
Eastern Washington’s Vernon Adams is heading to Oregon and is currently the favorite to replace NFL prospect Marcus Mariota. Adams is an interesting case because he is an All-American junior from Eastern Washington, a team from the Big Sky Conference: this conference competes in the NCAA Division I Football Championship, which was formerly known as NCAA Division I-AA Football Championship.
The QB in three years at Eastern Washington threw for 10,438 yards, 110 touchdowns and 31 interceptions: unfortunately, his biggest drawback is his size, he is only 6 feet tall and 190 pounds. Still, he is able to play for Oregon because he graduates from Eastern Washington this spring: as long as he is in the Ducks’ graduate program, he is eligible for the team.
So why is Oregon so keen on him? He is a two time Walter Payton Award Runner-Up and has performed exceptionally well against big time FBS opponents: in two starts against Pac-12 teams, he has 886 yards, eleven touchdowns and well over 100 rushing yards. And according to the Oregonian, both UCLA and Texas aggressively pursued him.
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Still once he gets to Oregon, it is not a guarantee that he has the job: as it is a six player race to determine the Ducks’ next starting QB. Junior Jeff Lockie, who served as Mariota’s back up, is the ideal choice, as he has the most experience with the team. On top of this, freshman Morgan Mahalak, freshman Ty Griffin, freshman Taylor Alie and incoming class of 2015’s Travis Waller — who will probably be redshirted — all have an opportunity to compete.
Mark Helfrich was obviously preparing for the day Mariota left: even with six potential prospects, the future NFL star leaves a looming shadow over the organization. Only time will tell if the undersized Vernon Adams could step up and take that spot for himself. Though he played in a lower division, he certainly has more game time experience than Jeff Lockie.
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