As the Oregon Ducks try to restock their offensive line with talent from the class of 2013, they may want to go ahead and restock the training room as well.
OL commit Evan Voeller of West Linn (Ore.) High School suffered a shoulder injury in September and has been watching his senior season from the sideline. Even though his team is struggling and may miss the playoffs, the No. 179 player in the ESPN 150 may be back before the season ends. One of his future teammates on the offensive line isn't so lucky.
Alex Redmond of Los Alamitos (Calif.) High School suffered a dislocated elbow in practice that has sidelined him for the rest of his senior season.
"I was playing defensive line in practice and I went to make a one-on-one tackle," Redmond said. "One of my teammates came in hard and his helmet just basically went right through my arm."
Playing both ways, the 6-foot-5, 302-pound Redmond was having a standout season -- one that prompted his legendary coach, John Barnes, to say, "Alex is one of the most improved players I've had in my 30 years of coaching. He is a man out there. He's physical and he's nasty when he's on that field."
Before the injury, Redmond was averaging 10 pancake blocks per game. He attributes his improvement to learning new techniques and getting quicker over the summer with improved footwork.
"I'm so much lighter on my feet now. I can take care of my responsibilities at the line and get to the second level to help spring one of my guys," Redmond said. "That is something I could never really do before. That's one of the reasons I'm excited about Oregon. That's what they expect out of you, and I feel like I've been able to make a lot of progress as a player. I think I will be able to make an impact."
He is already preparing for his time in Eugene. If he isn't been able to watch the Ducks live on TV, Redmond has made sure to record each of the Ducks' games so he can study up.
"I like to go back and watch them for two reasons. I like to study what they do on the offensive line and imagine what my approach would be on each play," Redmond said.
What he sees outside of that is the total domination of the Ducks in all facets of the game.
"It's pretty funny actually. You can just see them basically make the other team quit. I see the other teams' guys with their hands on the knees in the first half," Redmond said. "They just demoralize people every time they step on the field. Other teams can't keep up and eventually they just quit. It's pretty amazing to watch these teams just give up."
Before he joins the Ducks next year, Redmond is in the midst of an intensive rehab routine that has him focused on getting healthy in time for next year.
"Coach [Steve] Greatwood came by the school last week and just told me to stay patient," Redmond said. "He told me to take it easy and focus on school and my rehab. Sitting out the rest of my senior season sucks, but they don't want it to turn into a chronic injury."
As far as his state of mind after getting the 12-week recovery diagnosis, Redmond didn't like, it but he maintains a good attitude about the ordeal.
"It's kind of depressing, actually. I hate not being out there. All I do is homework, rehab, eat, sleep, eat and sleep some more," Redmond said. "Oh, and I punch the heavy bag with my left hand until I can't lift my arm. (Laughing) My knuckles are all bloody and torn up from getting pounded into the bag so many times."
With a nasty attitude on the field and a light-hearted, yet intense attitude off the field, Redmond should fit right in with the Ducks.