Five-star Oaks Christian (Calif.) defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux committed to Oregon on Saturday, giving the Ducks a player some regard as the best recruit in the class of 2019.
Thibodeaux had more than 40 offers, including from most of the sport’s blue-bloods. His final group was the Ducks, Alabama, Florida State, and Florida. Oregon had been widely considered the favorite to land him leading up to Saturday.
He’d previously expressed reservations about the rainy weather in Oregon, but he had praised head coach Mario Cristobal and line coach Joe Salave’a.
The Early Signing Period, when Thibodeaux can make his commitment official, runs Dec. 19-21. His verbal commitment comes on his birthday.
Thibodeaux is an imposing figure at 6’5ish and 240 pounds, with the frame to add 20 or 30 more pounds in a college weight program.
He is consensus five-star, and every major services rates him somewhere between the first and 10th best prospect nationally.
He explodes off the line in an effort to get to the passer. Thibodeaux can maintain his speed while presenting a small target for blockers to strike. With that, he can bend the edge and get to the passer.
But if a blocker sets too soon or too wide in an effort to cut off his outside rush, Thibodeaux can counter by converting his speed to power for an effective bull rush, or by using a spin or rip move.
Thibodeaux will work to refine his pass-rush moves in college, but he is not a one-trick pony by any stretch.