October 27, 2012; Eugene, OR, USA; Colorado Buffaloes fullback Christian Powell (46) runs the ball as Oregon Ducks defensive back James Scales III (17) and Oregon Ducks linebacker Rodney Hardrick (48) defend at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Olmos-USA TODAY Sports

2014 Oregon Football, Eleven Impact Players: Linebacker Rodney Hardrick

When it comes to strength of your Defense, the Oregon Ducks have had several key leaders over they last few years. From Michael Clay, to Dion Jordan and now it is time for players like Ifo Ekpre-Olomu and Linebacker Rodney Hardrick to step up and lead the Oregon Ducks Defense. Last season Hardrick played in all thirteen games for the Oregon Ducks finishing the year sixth in tackles with sixty five, thirty five of them were solo tackles. He made is presence felt early in the season against Nicholls State and Tennessee in 2013 with two stops and two tackles with a fumble recovery to start the year last season.

The Oregon Ducks will look for Hardrick to again get off to a solid early start in 2014 with South Dakota and especially with Michigan State, a game with College Football Playoff implications. Of course, Oregon would likely not have an issue if he had a punt return for a touchdown, as he did last season against UCLA at Autzen Stadium. When it comes to impact, the Linebacker spot for the Oregon Ducks will look to Hardrick as both a physical and vocal leader for the upcoming season. The Oregon Ducks kick off the 2014 campaign against South Dakota on Saturday, August 30th.(7:30pm PT, Pac-12 Networks)

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Tags: Ducks General Oregon Football Rodney Hardrick

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