What does QB Collin Schlee’s commitment to UCLA mean for Dante Moore and the Ducks?

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It was a few days ago. I wrote about the future of the Oregon Ducks quarterback position, It was amazing to see the possibilities of what would happen over the next few weeks. Bo Nix and Dante Moore were the dominos that threatened to fall, threatening to impact many players and schools. It was crucial to be aware of their every move moving forward.

It was however, a different quarterback that was the first to fall on Saturday. This could have implications for a variety of schools as well as players. It was reported first by ESPN’s Pete Thamel that former Kent State QB Collin Schlee was transferring to the UCLA Bruins, and later confirmed by the school.

This could have a significant impact on the Ducks. I wrote about it Friday. Let’s break down why it’s important.

Collin Schlee: What do we know?

Dale Zanine USA TODAY Sports

I don’t think Collin Schlee is transferring to the UCLA Bruins to serve as a backup. He may have been told that he is going to be in a quarterback competition with other passers — potentially a 5-star freshman — but after the career that Schlee has had and with his standing as one of the top available quarterbacks in the transfer portal, this is not a move where I think he was sold on going to Westwood to wait in the wings.

I could be wrong, and I have no inside info on Schlee’s thinking, or what he was told in the recruiting process, but it feels like he is headed to Los Angeles to become the starting quarterback for Chip Kelly in 2023, or at the very least compete for the job with a high likelihood of getting it.

What does this mean for Dante Moore

With all of the buzz and rumors about Dante Moore’s potential flip from the Oregon Ducks to UCLA, one of the main reasons that people believed the notion was because the Bruins offered an instant path to playing time in 2023 as the starting QB. UCLA is now looking for a starting QB to replace Dorian Thompson-Robinson, something Oregon might not be able too with Bo Nix’s potential return.

Moore could be hindered by Schlee being in Los Angeles if he is not a starter. If he realizes that he is unlikely to play in Los Angeles right away, might that be a sign that he may reconsider his decision to flip from Oregon?

This means that the Oregon Ducks will be affected by this news.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY

I think Duck fans should be happy that a UCLA transfer quarterback is coming to campus. It doesn’t guarantee that Moore is going to come to Eugene, but if anything it further complicates the situation and makes it less of a slam dunks to flip to UCLA. I don’t know that I’m a ton more confident in Moore signing with the Ducks now than I was on Saturday morning, but I think that this is a step in the right direction for Oregon when everything seemed to be heading down the wrong path.

Does Dante Moore have any interest in UCLA now?

This is a question that I obviously can’t answer with complete honesty because I don’t know the thinking of Moore. But I do think that a commitment to Schlee might not fully turn the 5-star quarterback away from UCLA.

If Moore’s ultimate goal is playing time in 2023, then he’s going to have to compete for it no matter where he goes. Moore may be the best option in that competition. But he might need to work harder. However, it’s easy to say that Moore has a better chance of beating Schlee in a QB competition than he does against Bo Nix.

Bo Nix is the perfect fit for all of this

John Hefti USA TODAY Sport

One of the biggest questions in Oregon football circles over the past week has been about what Bo Nix’s eventual NFL decision will be, and why it’s taken so long for him to announce. I recently heard a theory that I think makes a ton of sense, and I have to give 247Sports’ Matt Prehm all of the credit for this one, which he laid out on the Autzen Audibles podcast.

It is believed that Nix is currently in a staring contest/leverage game with Oregon. Moore may end up switching to UCLA, or signing with the Ducks. This would make his return to Oregon that much more valuable. The Ducks would be in serious trouble if Moore and Nix were to go this offseason. Perhaps he is waiting to see Moore’s performance before he announces a comeback so that he can use that as leverage for a bigger NIL package. Oregon would undoubtedly pay more for him to return in 2023 if they knew that there wasn’t a 5-star QB coming to Eugene this spring.

This is not confirmed, obviously, but it makes the most sense of anything that I’ve heard. I wouldn’t be surprised if we have to wait until after the Holiday Bowl to get Nix’s final decision, but I absolutely buy that he is sitting back and watching how the dominos fall around him, hoping that it might get him a little bit more money to return to Oregon in the end.

Story originally appeared on Ducks Wire

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