Oregon coach Dana Altman has come under intense scrutiny this offseason after three former players were accused of rape (no charges were filed) and dismissed from the team. Their departures – combined with Oregon losing five seniors and two players to transfer – left the Ducks with just nine scholarship players heading into the 2014-15 season.
Oregon added a new player on Thursday, when point guard Ahmaad Rorie, ranked No. 116 in 2014 by Rivals, announced at his high school that he was joining the Ducks. Rorie committed to Cal in March 2012, but was granted his release in April after Cuonzo Martin took over following Mike Montgomery’s decision to retire.
Rorie, who chose Oregon over several other Pac-12 programs, discussed his college decision on Thursday. From the Seattle Times:
“The main thing that sold me was the coaches," he said. "Every coach on the staff I liked and I feel like I can have a really good relationship with going forward. Then I wanted to stay close to home, but I didn’t want to be in Washington. So I was like, maybe Oregon. Then I liked all the gear. I liked all the facilities. I like how they make the tournament every year and I feel like I can help them win a national title. That was the main thing that sold me about Oregon.”
The 6-foot, 175-pound guard is one of seven newcomers for the Ducks. Given Oregon’s lack of guard depth, Rorie should compete for backcourt minutes right away, along with fellow freshmen Casey Benson and JaQuan Lyle, the No. 24 player in 2014. Oregon’s backcourt will also feature leading scorer Joseph Young and senior Jalil Abul-Bassit. With the addition of Rorie, Oregon now has three open scholarships.