Oregon football is gearing up for a huge season as the Ducks are the presumed favorite to three-peat as Pac-12 champs and potentially contend for a playoff spot.
Mario Cristobal has assembled his most talented roster since taking over at Oregon and fans are as optimistic as ever heading into the season despite the quarterback position still needing to be figured out.
Will Anthony Brown hold on to win the starting job or will freshman Ty Thompson make a push? If you’ve been paying attention during fall camp thus far, you’d realize that the quarterback battle has been getting closer but the staff is almost ready to name a starter.
Along with the quarterback battle prediction, let’s take a look at some of our boldest educated guesses for Oregon ahead of the 2021 season.
5. Dontae Manning will be a Freshman All-American
I contemplated using this spot for Kayvon Thibodeaux being a Heisman finalist, but I don’t think that’s all that bold of a prediction based on the fact that he’s already a first-team All-American, so instead I’ll focus on one of the bright young stars in the Pac-12 who hasn’t broken out yet.
Dontae Manning is in his second year with the program, but he’s a redshirt freshman, making him eligible to make the Freshman All-American team.
And I think he’ll do just that.
Manning is one of the best cornerbacks from the 2020 recruiting class and he spent most of the 2020 season learning from a slew of draft picks as well as Mykael Wright who I think will be a first-team All-Pac-12 selection this season. He’s going to take all the knowledge he soaked up and put it to use in place of a suspended DJ James, holding onto the starting job all year.
On top of that, he’s going to be an All-Pac-12 selection and Freshman All-American with his three interceptions and nine pass breakups.