The Pac-12 or Pac-4, as it’s being called now, is in limbo, leaving local athletes who committed to those four remaining schools in a confusing conference.
“Recruiting is hard here, so I had to go out to get recruited, and that was the best thing I could have done for myself,” said Crook County High Schooler Eddie Freauff.
The wide receiver aimed to make it big, and working hard wasn’t the only battle before him.
He traveled across the North West, participating in football camps, hoping to be noticed.
“I had to go in front of coaches staff to show my skill, and that is how I was able to get in front of eyes, and OSU was at all the camps, so that is how they got to see me,” Freuaff said.
Eddie did it. He got the attention of the Beavers and committed to Oregon State University.
On the diamond at Mountain View High School in Bend, pitcher Gavin Derr had a similar journey.
“Last year is when I did my first camp, and right after that, I had a couple of schools talk to me,” said Mountain View High Schooler Gavin Derr. “Just some JUCO, NAIA, and a couple of D1 schools. So, that was real exciting, just getting in that process.”
That process led Gavin to commit to Washington State recently.
“It just seems like the right place, and Pullman seems like a really nice area and just fits me,” he said.
But at the same time, both these athletes were watching their dreams to sign to D-1 schools.
The Pac-12 was being torn apart, shrinking by the day.
Eight of the teams have now left the conference.
Only Cal, Stanford, Washington State, and Oregon State remain.
“It’s kind of a bummer,” Freauff said. “I hope the Pac-12 doesn’t get dismantled, but it doesn’t change what I think about the Beavers. I think the Beavers football isn’t going to change at all.”
Unexpected, no doubt, but for these local athletes, conferences don’t matter.
The only thing that matters to them is playing the sports they love.
“It didn’t really bother me much,” Derr said. “Baseball is baseball. That is all I wanted. I am not too worried about it. As long I am playing and having fun with it, I am totally fine with what is going on.”
“Doesn’t change why I want to go there,” Freauff said. “I want to go there because of the football and the coaching staff, and I don’t think that is going to change if the conference changes.”