Devon Allen has the world at his fingertips right now. In order for him to fully grasp it with both hands though, he needs a good college education.
Recently, Allen took a huge step toward making that happen by making the University of Oregon his college of choice.
The Brophy College Prep football and track star is originally from Seattle, Wash., so he’s going back home to the Pacific Northwest.
“It’s the best of both worlds for me, playing football and running track,” Allen said, when speaking of Oregon.
Allen said he got a real good vibe from the track team’s coaching staff when he and his father took their official visit to Eugene, Ore.
For him, all that was left was for the football team to offer him a scholarship and he was all set to say yes.
“Coach [Scott] Frost [Ducks offensive coordinator] called me two weeks ago and made the football offer, so I thought about it for about a week and decided that was the place for me,” Allen said.
Coach Chip Kelly’s departure to the NFL and the Philadelphia Eagles had no bearing on his decision at all, according to Allen, primarily because the offer came after Kelly left.
“Even though I had met him before and talked to him a few times, he was never really in the picture,” Allen said. “Coach Kelly leaving is not a huge deal to me, I think the program is gonna be the same.”
On the football side, Allen said he’s going to be used more as a “burner” type, to run deep routes and try to open up the opposing defenses even more.
“They said they don’t find a lot of fast guys that could play receiver that’s my size, they’re usually smaller,” Allen said. “That’s a big plus for me I think, [and] that’ll definitely give me a chance to play early, if I continue to work hard.”
Allen said he’ll run the hurtles and the sprints on the track side of things.
Allen and his father, Louis, talked quite a but during the whole recruiting process, and as much as we all know how great a place Arizona is to live, the Allen family decided it was time for Devon to spread his wings and go.
“I wanted to get away from Arizona for at least four years of my life,” Allen said. “I talked to my dad and he kind of said there’s something to be said about going out of state and leaving home for a little bit.”
The move, Allen said, won’t bother him too much, again because he’s from that part of the United States.
The Ducks football and track programs are national powerhouses.
The track program alone has 19 NCAA National Championships.
Anyone who’s anyone knows their football team is ranked in the Top-10 and in a BCS bowl seemingly every year.
When you have a university that has two wildly successful programs like that, no wonder Allen chose to go to school there.
“Adding me in the track would be a plus,” Allen said. “We could definitely go for two national championships in the same year in football and track, [and] that would be pretty cool.”
Speaking of pretty cool, Allen has always had the dream of playing in and winning a Super Bowl, as well as taking part in the Olympics.
He feels that Oregon gives him the best shot at living out his ultimate dream, as long as he does his part to make it happen.
“Just being able to put those two together is really going to make me successful,” Allen said. “Whatever one I choose later on or [whichever] one I’m doing the best at, I’ll definitely have a chance if I continue to work hard and do what I’m supposed to do.”
I asked Allen what he thinks it’ll be like when he comes back to Arizona for the first time when Oregon takes on Arizona State, either in track or in football.
Arizona State was in Allen’s Top 5, but his want to be away from the state for a while eliminated them in the end.
“It’ll be kind of cool to just have some Devon Allen fans, not just Oregon fans or ASU fans, but fans of me,” Allen said. “I’ll be welcome with open hands, open hearts, hopefully. I know some of the fans are kind of hurt right now, but I think they’ll get over it and everything will be okay.”
Allen says his major will most likely be chemical/mechanical engineering [his father is an engineer], but he could also decide to major in sports marketing.
Allen has such a passion for track and the athletes that participate in it that he wants to be able to help them be even more successful.
“I want to be able to help other athletes get sponsorships and find money in the sport, especially in track, because there’s not a lot of money, but there’s still money to be found,” Allen said.
He mentioned working with companies such as Nike, Adidas and Under Armour, and being able to create new products for athletes and having them test out the “gear” he helped to create.
Beyond that, Allen has thoughts of being a coach some day, either in football or track.
“I like to help people learn the craft, something I spent most of my life doing, perfecting the craft,” Allen said. “Being able to do that and teach other kids that would be kinda cool when I get older.”