Tag Archives: Oshay Dunmore

Football Friday, Under the Lights!

This week’s Football Friday looks back at last weekend’s spring game and looks ahead to the spring recruiting season. Join Blue Devil Nation Premium to stay in the loop with Duke Football all year long. [private]


This week's Football Friday is under the lights!

Welcome to Football Friday, under the lights! This is what happens when the Football Friday author has a busy week at his day job studying gynecology. FUN! In all seriousness, sorry to be tardy to the party, but it unfortunately will happen from time to time that we'll have a nightcap. It’s been a busy week in Duke Football, so let’s get right to it.

Positives from the spring game

A quick highlight of the spring game with some comments from Coach Cutcliffe was posted today on our Facebook page. There was a lot to like from the spring game and good reason to be positive and optimistic about this fall. Of course, questions still exist about this year’s Blue Devils, particularly on the defensive side of the ball, but many of those questions won’t be answered until they line up against Richmond and Stanford in weeks 1 and 2. The spring game was a good opportunity to evaluate some potential strengths and weaknesses as the team heads into the 2011 season. Just a few quick thoughts:

The defense as a whole, including the defensive line, performed better than expected. I thought Duke competed well along the line of scrimmage and were even able to pressure the quarterback. It still seems likely that incumbents Charlie Hatcher, Sydney Sarmiento, and Justin Foxx will see the majority of snaps at their respective positions, but the influx of redshirt-freshmen has really improved the depth along the front four. In particular, players like Jamal Wallace, who led the team in tackles in the spring game, and Jordan DeWalt-Ondijo, who was credited with a sack, appear ready to contribute this fall. I am excited to see what Coach Petri is able to do with this young group of linemen.

Issac Blakeney looks to be ready to contribute for the Blue Devils in 2011

Ross Cockrell took home the most improved defensive player award, and the staff has always remained excited about his potential, despite some early struggles as a first-year starter last season. In the spring game, Blue Devil fans got a look at another exciting young member of the Duke secondary in Issac Blakeney. Blakeney was impressive last Saturday, totaling 5 total tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble, and 1 pass breakup. The Blue Devils will add 3 talented freshmen to the secondary this fall in Jared Boyd, Tim Burton, and Chris Tavarez, which should mean that the Duke defensive backs will be improved from a year ago. Duke will of course need big years out of veterans Matt Daniels and Lee Butler in the secondary, but the future looks bright.

Offensively, there was even more reason for optimism. Duke is in the enviable position of having three talented quarterbacks in Sean Renfree, Brandon Connette, and Anthony Boone. After Saturday’s performance, it is reasonable to assume that all three will see playing time this fall, and Coach Cutcliffe alluded to some possible creative offensive packages in his post-game comments. All three quarterbacks showed the ability to lead successful drives in the spring game, both on the ground and through the air. Though senior Jay Hollingsworth was held out, the four remaining backs were impressive in limited action. Sophomore Juwan Thompson was awarded most improved offensive player, and he is likely to see an expanded role this fall. At receiver, Duke has All-ACC caliber upperclassmen in Donovan Varner, Conner Vernon, and Cooper Helfet, coupled with rising stars in Tyree Watkins, Brandon Braxton, and Braxton Deaver. The offensive line returns all but one starter and adds talented redshirt freshmen to the depth chart. In summary, there are a lot of reasons to be excited about Duke’s potential on the offense.

Duke picks up 2nd commitment for 2012

Allen Jackson met with Coach Cutcliffe after the spring game on Saturday and gave his verbal pledge to the Duke Football program. BDN spoke with the newest Blue Devil last Sunday, who mentioned Duke’s academics, as well as his respect for new defensive line coach Rick Petri. As a player, Jackson has tremendous athleticism for his size and the potential to be a dynamic pass rushing defensive end at the college level. His biggest weakness is size, but he plans to work on adding strength over the next year to prepare himself for the college game. The Duke staff is very excited about Allen’s commitment, and the Blue Devil Nation welcomes its newest member.

Spring recruiting picking up

In case you haven’t noticed, things are really picking up with recruiting around the Blue Devils and around the country. With spring practices at most schools now in full swing, prospects are taking in practices and spring games, and commitments have begun to roll in. Duke hosted a number of prospects at the spring game, most notably TE Dan Beilinson, LB Deion Williams, DE Romeo Okwara, and OL Eric Olson. All four players have received offers from Duke and enjoyed their visit to Duke. Dan Beilinson described his visit as “a really great experience.” With spring practice now completed, the Duke staff will focus their efforts on the recruiting trail.

With a few dozen offers already extended, the first step for the Duke staff is to fully assess each prospect’s interest in the Duke program. Several prospects with offers, especially those from the west coast (i.e., QB Oshay Dunmore, TE Evan Baylis, WR Jonavaughn Williams) have yet to make a trip to Durham. For many families, the travel costs required by long distance unofficial visits are prohibitive, and the only way Duke will be able to see these prospects on campus will be to wait until official visits, a potentially risky proposition. This can be a difficult point in the recruiting process, as the Blue Devil staff must decide where to best focus their efforts and resources.

While I do expect Duke to eventually begin to cast a wider net with scholarship offers, most likely during June camps, there is a group of prospects that Duke has made a very strong impression on this spring. These are players already with impressive offer lists, and I suspect Duke will remain heavily involved with their recruitment. In fact, I expect Duke to secure another verbal commitment fairly soon, based on the feedback I have heard from the prospects directly. It is undoubtedly extremely early in the recruiting process, and written scholarship offers are still months away, but the early indications from the class of 2012 appear very promising for the Blue Devils.

A shameless plea until next week

Well, that’s all the time I’m allowed to spend thinking/writing about football for now, so it’s back to studying gynecology. I know you think I’m kidding, but I’m not. Until next week, I know there are a few of you out there who read this column weekly and are interested in Duke Football. With basketball season now sadly behind us, please join in the discussion on our football message board. There’s lots to talk about, and I assure you there are no experts or holier-than-thou’s among us. We’ve got lots more football recruiting coverage still to come and we always welcome input and suggestions. We all make up the Blue Devil Nation – WE ARE DUKE!


Top athlete Oshay Dunmore has offers from Duke, Oregon, Oregon State, and Washington

When Head Coach David Cutcliffe came to Durham, he vowed that he would transform the Blue Devils into a faster and more athletic team. In his first few recruiting classes, he has added several high-level athletes, including Isaac Blakeney in 2010 and Jamison Crowder in 2011. The coaching staff is looking to continue that trend in the class of 2012, and recently extended an offer to one of the top athletes in the country. Oshay Dunmore is an All-State quarterback from Newport, Oregon, who totaled over 3,200 yards and 33 touchdowns as a junior. In addition to his prowess on the gridiron, Dunmore stars in basketball and competes in the decathlon, where he ranks among the top in the country. Highlights from his standout junior year in football can be viewed here.

Note: Oshay Dunmore has since committed to Oregon.

BDN: Can you start off by describing your strengths for fans who haven’t had a chance to see you play?

Well, I play football, track, and basketball. In football, I was a spread offense quarterback, so I did a lot of read-option type plays and we ran a spread so I got to run a lot. My game’s still – a lot of coaches have kind of compared me to Cam Newton, maybe not exactly on that level, but that was my style. I have a lot more running, my passing game is a little bit of my weak side right now, so that’s coming along, I have a lot of camps coming up. I’m a pretty good runner, pretty agile, and I like the stiff arm, I’m about 6’2” 200 pounds so my height, length, and size gives me some advantages on the field. And for track I kind of do everything. I do decathlons and this weekend I had my first decathlon of the year and it placed me #1 in the country right now. I scored a 6290 and it was alright, it was pretty bad weather but it was a good mark to get out there for the beginning of the season.

BDN: What are some of the things you’ve been working on this offseason?

Just some of my foot quickness and just speed and acceleration, getting stronger every day, working hard in the weight room. I’m just doing whatever I can to sharpen my game on the whole. But passing is one of the big things, not necessarily like – I have pretty good confidence and everything, it’s just more of my consistency with my throwing. I was pretty inconsistent this year, but that’s something that we’ve got a lot of camps lined up for. Just foot speed, strength, and just getting better as a whole football player.

BDN: What are some of your goals for your senior year?

I want to try and go 30-30, 30 rushing TDs and 30 passing TDs. That’s a big goal. There’s a lot of goals I have set for track to get all my numbers up there, but for football I want to get 30 rushing touchdowns and 30 passing.

BDN: What are the most important factors you’re looking for in a college?

I want to do track and football at the collegiate level, so anywhere that I’m able to do that is a big thing for me. I kind of like the big school atmosphere because I spent a lot of my life in the city, I grew up in Seattle for most of my life and then we spent 3 years over in Chicago, so I kind of like the big city, big environment with lots of diversity. I like kind of warm climate, a little bit of rain is alright, but yeah the major thing is letting me do track and football at a college.


BDN: Who are the schools that you have heard the most from?

Oregon was the first one to contact me with an offer and then the next day Oregon State offered me. Then later on during the week the University of Washington contacted me. Then at the beginning of the next week Duke offered me. Those are the schools that we’ve been in contact with a lot. We’ve talked to UCLA a little bit, Cal, and Princeton. Those are the big schools that have been in contact with me. I’ve sent some film to Texas, Alabama, Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Florida. Alabama gave us a little bit of feedback, but I don’t think the staff has really gotten a chance to watch it, but they let me know they got it, I’m just waiting on feedback from them now.

BDN: Which schools have you had a chance to visit so far?

I’ve been able to go down to the University of Oregon and Oregon State, just because they’re here in my home state and so they’re not very far away, an hour, hour and a half max drive to go down there. I’ve been to a few games and talked to the coaching staff quite a bit for both schools, so those are the only ones I’ve been to.

BDN: Do you have any plans for additional visits or camps this spring and summer?

No, there’s not a lot. Just some passing league camps and a Nike combine I’m going to do. I think I’m going to go down to the Oregon camp they have there this summer, and then the majority of my summer will be taken up by track.

BDN: You mentioned interest in Duke as well as some other ACC and East Coast schools. Do you have any plans to visit any East Coast schools or are you mainly focusing on West Coast programs?

Yeah, I’d love to go over to the East Coast, but financially I don’t think I’ll be able to just fly myself out there, so if any schools were interested enough, I would like to take my official visits out there. I’m definitely interested in going out there, I just won’t be able to do it by myself.

BDN: You’ve obviously been busy with basketball and track, but do you have an idea for when you would like to make your final decision or how you would like to narrow things down?

I definitely want to take some visits, just to see some different environments, see what I like and make sure I’m making the right choice, it’s going to be the next 4-5 years that I’m going to be at this college. I want to take a few visits just to get some different looks at different places and see what I like best, where I’ll fit in the best, how I like the coaches and who’s going to be there to really support me in the long run. I think after I take a few visits I’ll make my decision, probably in the middle of my season next year for football.

BDN: Is there anything else that you think is important for college football fans to know about you?

I’m a hard worker and I’ll fit in where they need me to fit in.

BDN: Thanks a lot, Oshay, and best of luck to you.

Alright, cool, thank you.