February 24, 2009

Redshirt Review: Dion Jordan

When you think of a 6-foot-7 football player, you rarely think wide receiver. For the first part of his football career, the athleticism of Dion Jordan allowed him to do exactly that. Jordan excelled on the field catching balls for Chandler (Ariz.) High School. In 13 games as a junior, Jordan gathered 54 catches for 804 yards and 13 touchdowns. In the first six games of his senior he had 13 catches for 292 yards and three touchdowns. Then adversity struck.

While working on a car with friends, a spark caused a fuel explosion leaving Jordan with severe burns. By the time letter of intent day arrived in February, 2008, the Oregon Ducks were impressed with his rapid recovery and relentless rehabilitation work and signed him to their 2008 recruiting class.

As with most freshmen, Oregon chose to redshirt Jordan, who worked with the scout team in 2008. DSA caught up with Oregon offensive coordinator Chip Kelly to get his take on how Dion Jordan has progressed.

“We moved Dion from wide receiver to tight end during bowl practice,” Kelly informed Duck Sports Authority. “He grew into it and I’m excited about Dion’s growth.”

When Dion Jordan arrived at the U of O he was 6-foot-7, but only weighed 215 pounds. Few coaches would consider that enough mass to play inside at the line of scrimmage. Jordan has expanded his versatility and usefulness by adding quality weight.

“It looks like he’s gotten bigger,” observed Kelly. “He’s up to 240 pounds and I see a very nice future for him at tight end for us.”

What does Kelly like about Dion Jordan? Lots of things.

“He’s tough, he’s physical, he catches the ball really well,” Kelly began. “He’s all of 6’7. He’s gotten better as a route runner and I think that now he’s with Oz (ST/TE coach Tom Osbourne) full-time he will continue to get better.”

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