Lochlin Deeks is one of the top defensive ends in the Pacific Northwest for the 2012 class and by taking three unofficial visits to Oregon this past season it is clear the Salem (Ore.) West Salem standout has an early favorite.
Deeks, a 6-foot-3, 241-pound prospect, said the Ducks are ahead of others but only slightly because he's going to look at all the programs involved with him - and that's a growing list.
"It's the home-state school and the home favorite," Deeks said of Oregon. "I've always been a fan of theirs so they're up front but just by a little bit.
"(Autzen Stadium) is pretty much what everybody says it is - the loudest stadium in the country. Everyone starts screaming and it's a great place to be. Everyone is a huge fan. It's awesome. It's awesome what they're doing. The facilities there are amazing and everything about it is just unbelievable."
LSU, Florida State, UCLA, Notre Dame and Miami are some other programs showing early interest in Deeks, who looked especially good at the Eugene NIKE Camp prior to his junior season.
There is definite interest in all the teams recruiting him even if Oregon has the slight edge as he prepares for more camps and combines this off-season.
"I love getting letters from schools," Deeks said. "It's good to hear about those schools and their programs and their players. My mom really wants me to get out and look at all schools so I'm open to everything.
"My brothers were good at football but they weren't really big enough to play in college so getting all these letters is really an unbelievable feeling."