This is something which cannot be understated. The Ducks return the best quarterback in the Pac-12 and with a healthy Mariota, Oregon will likely be favored in every game they play. De'Anthony Thomas still hasn't made his decision but I will make the assumption he is leaving. Having Thomas Tyner and Byron Marshall in the backfield will likely provide one of the more dynamic one-two punches in the backfield.
■ Oregon commit, RB Royce Freeman, had a big day helping the West beat the East in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Saturday.
■ Dale Newton looks at how Oregon commits fared in other high school all-star bowls.
■ If De'Anthony Thomas comes back next year Dale Newton proposes a more defined role, receiver.
He is still the same electric player he was when he came to Oregon, with 45 career touchdowns. The Oregon coaches have to do a better job utilizing him if he returns, and he has to apply himself with the change in position. Receivers coach Matt Lubick has a tremendous track record developing players. Both Josh Huff and Addison made huge strides in their game this season under his direction. Nobody coaches details and technique with more meticulous attention. If Thomas wants to play, win and build a first-round resume, he'll have to pay attention.