Oregon getting a good one in Chaparral’s Yruretagoyena

SCOTTSDALE (AP) — Offensive lineman Andre Yruretagoyena took to Facebook to announce his college choice.

“I’m an Oregon Duck,” he posted.

The 6-foot-4, 285-pound offensive tackle committed verbally to the Ducks in late June. At Oregon, he follows notable linemen Haloti Ngata and Fenuki Tupou, both now in the NFL.

Yruretagoyena received scholarship offers from at least 17 schools. Among those he considered before choosing Oregon were Southern Cal and almost every other Pac-10 school, as well as Michigan and Louisiana State.

But the Ducks always had the inside track. His father, stepmother and brother live in Oregon, and he has long been a fan of the team.

He’ll have some company from Arizona: Offensive tackle Tyler Johnstone (6-5, 265) from Chandler Hamilton is also headed to Eugene.

Yruretagoyena underwent shoulder surgery in December but has fully recovered in time to help Scottsdale’s Chaparral High School defend its 5A Division II championship. The Firebirds went 13-1 last season.

His coach, Charlie Ragle, said Yruretagoyena has agility and athleticism to go along with his size, making him a prized commodity.

“Those guys don’t grow on trees,” Ragle said.

Ragle said he’s been impressed with how Yruretagoyena has progressed since he was a freshman. Sometimes bigger kids are more timid on the playing field because they don’t want to hurt the smaller players — and that was the case here.

Not anymore.

“He plays the game with a fierceness that you want,” Ragle said.

Yruretagoyena is known as a blocking machine who finishes strong. He is remarkably quick for his size.

Expect him to add considerable weight once he arrives on the Oregon campus and coaches and trainers begin preparing him for the next level.