The controversy over Oregon's handling of rape allegations against three of its top players apparently hasn't diminished coach Dana Altman's ability to recruit.
Altman secured one of the most coveted remaining prospects in the class of 2014 when point guard Ahmaad Rorie announced at an assembly at his school on Thursday that he will attend Oregon. Rorie, a former Cal signee who backed out of his letter of intent after Mike Montgomery retired last month, also considered Washington, Washington State and Missouri.
The addition of Rorie comes at a time when Oregon is desperate for good news after a spring marred by a flurry of transfers and dismissals.
Point guard Dominic Artis and wings Damyean Dotson and Brandon Austin each will not be allowed to return to the program after being accused of rape earlier this spring. The Lane County District Attorney's office opted not to prosecute due to insufficient evidence, but Oregon still came under fire for allowing Dotson and Artis to play in the postseason after the allegations surfaced and for not sufficiently looking into Austin's background.
It's easy to see why Rorie might still have interest in Oregon in spite of the tumultuous offseason. Since the Ducks graduated Jonathan Loyd and dismissed Artis, they have a clear hole at point guard, which means Rorie will have every chance to start right away alongside leading scorer Joseph Young and top recruit JaQuan Lyle in the backcourt.
Still, even with that backcourt trio joined in the frontcourt by returner Elgin Cook and junior college standout Michael Chandler, Oregon is still paper-thin. Between the dismissals of Dotson, Artis and Austin, the prior transfers of forward Ben Carter and guard A.J. Lapray and the graduation of five other players from last season, Oregon only has four players left from last season: Young, Cook and seldom-used guards Jalil Abdul-Bassit and Theo Friedman.
The addition of a Rivals 150 prospect in Rorie will certainly help. And with three more vacant scholarships, it's also evidence Oregon may yet be able to bolster its roster further in the coming months.
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