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LMJ Ducks out of Eugene, heads to NFL

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To the surprise of absolutely no one, especially in light of recent reports, LaMichael James has officially played his final game as a member of the Oregon Ducks.

Via a school press release, the UO running back announced Friday afternoon that he will be leaving Eugene and making himself available for the April draft.

“My experience at the University of Oregon has been one unlike any other, and one I will never forget,” James said in a statement. “I am grateful for the people I have met, the things I have learned, and the amazing community I have had the privilege of being a part of over the last three-and-a-half years. The community of Eugene welcomed me with open arms and has supported me since the day I arrived. I am lucky to have been a part of such an amazing place. I can truly say Eugene is my home away from home and a place I will always hold in high regards.

“As for my coaches and teammates — they are my family. I love each and every one of them and am eternally grateful for having each of them be a part of my life. It has been both an honor and a privilege to be a part of something as great as the UO family.”

James has led the nation in rushing yards per game each of the past two seasons and, as a true freshman in 2009, finished ninth.

Thanks to that type of production, some view James as a lock to be a first-round pick in a couple of months.  Thanks to his size — he’s listed at 5-9, 195 pounds — others view him as a second rounder at best.

Regardless of what his immediate or long-term NFL future holds, he will remain one of the most electrifying and breathtaking players the college game has seen in the last decade or more.


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5 Responses to “LMJ Ducks out of Eugene, heads to NFL”
  1. burntorangehorn says: Jan 6, 2012 6:47 PM

    I think he’s a more durable, more powerful Clinton Portis at worst. Anyone remember how much Portis weighed coming out of Miami?

    For more recent comparisons, I’m thinking MJD (although not quite as thick and powerful between the knees and waist), Sproles, or maybe even Spiller. Some of it’s going to depend on how he measures in height and weight, because guys like Sproles and Rodgers slipped to the fourth and fifth rounds respectively. I don’t think James is going to go as early as Spiller or as late as Rodgers, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he made it past the first round.

  2. centexhorn says: Jan 6, 2012 7:11 PM

    Now it’s finally not against the rules for him to get an agent. Not that that ever stopped him before. Maybe his agent can help him get around taking the Wonderlic test, like Willie Lyles did for him back in Texarkana.

  3. jason1214 says: Jan 6, 2012 8:26 PM


    Lets hope he’s not the next Spiller, not exactly working out for him at the moment.

    You forget one mighty-mite for the ages..
    Barry Sanders, not that James IS the next Sanders

  4. burntorangehorn says: Jan 6, 2012 8:31 PM

    I was thinking about Sanders, but Barry’s a much better comparison for MJD. He was one of the most powerful-legged guys out there. I played basketball with the guy at the East Wichita YMCA when I was a lifeguard there, and his thighs were as big as most people’s waists! James has good quads and hammies, but not like that.

  5. tonystrong says: Jan 6, 2012 11:29 PM

    Gonna be interesting whether LaMichael or Lamar Miller goes first in the draft. Both are similar backs in that their size may prevent them from being an every down back and that they’re more of big play backs rather then bruisers who will grind for yardage. The difference between them is that both have a different type of explosiveness. LaMichael’s explosiveness comes when he hits the edge while Lamar’s is when he hits a hole. But as for LaMichael, I think whoever gets him will get a play maker. A guy will will strike out 100 times but hit 30 home runs to make a baseball analogy!!

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