TUCSON, Ariz. – The 2010 Oregon recruiting class was ranked third in the nation by Collegiate Baseball’s annual evaluation of NCAA Division I baseball classes, it was announced by the publication today.

The ranking marks the third consecutive season a Ducks’ recruiting class has earned a top-25 ranking from a collegiate baseball publication, and for the first time since Oregon’s reinstatement, the Ducks have been evaluated with the top class in the Pacific-10 Conference.

“This is an exceptional class that has joined our program for the 2010-11 academic year,” head coach George Horton said. “The 2010 class should instantly help our young program as it continues to grow. I have to give all the credit to assistant coaches Andrew Checketts and Mike Kirby for evaluating the best talent in the country, and bringing those student-athletes to the University of Oregon. The class includes an exemplary group of young men that are committed to success both on the field and in the classroom. Our staff and players are looking forward to working with this special group of fine young men.”

Oregon’s 2010 class consists of 13 newcomers, including 11 freshmen and two junior college transfers.

The 2010 freshman class is comprised of six 2010 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft selections including infielder Tyler Kuresa (Roseville, Calif./Oakmont HS), catcher Stefan Sabol (Aliso Viejo, Calif./Aliso Niguel HS), right-hander Brando Tessar (Simi Valley, Calif./Chaminade HS), outfielder Connor Hofmann (San Diego, Calif./St. Augustine HS), catcher Aaron Jones (San Clemente, Calif./San Clemente HS) and right-hander Brandon Brennan (San Juan Capistrano, Calif./Capistrano Valley HS).

In addition, Oregon has highly-touted freshmen outfielder Kyle Garlick (Chino Hills, Calif./Chino Hills HS), right-hander Ryon Healy (West Hills, Calif.), infielder Aaron Payne (San Clemente, Calif./San Clemente HS), right-hander Jimmie Sherfy (Camarillo, Calif./Newbury Park HS) and outfielder Brett Thomas (Poway, Calif./Poway HS) on the roster.

Earlier this month, Sabol was named the West Coast League’s top prospect by both Baseball America and Perfect Game Crosschecker, while Healy was named the California Collegiate League’s top prospect by Baseball America.

Jones, who also played in the WCL, was named the league’s No. 11 prospect by Perfect Game Crosschecker, while Kuresa was picked as the Hawaii Collegiate Baseball League’s No. 3 and No. 10 prospects by Perfect Game Crosschecker and Baseball America, respectively.

Junior college transfer Brett Hambright was drafted by the Rockies out of Riverside Community College in 2009, and is one of three newcomers who will be working behind the plate this year. Oregon’s second JC transfer is outfielder Alex Buccilli from Frederick Community College in Maryland.

The Ducks are entering their second week of fall practice after beginning workouts on Sept. 13.
Oregon is returning to the field after advancing to the Norwich Regional finals in 2010, in only the program’s second year of reinstatement after a 27-year absence.

Horton manufactured the second-best turn around in NCAA history since 1998, as UO went from 14-42 in 2009 to 40-24 in 2010. Oregon ended the 2010 season ranked in four out of five national polls.

Collegiate Baseball's 2010 Recruiting Results               
(As of Sept. 21, 2010)               

1. Louisiana St.       
2. San Diego       
3. Oregon           
4. UCLA           
5. Florida       
6. Georgia Tech.       
7. South Carolina       
8. Cal. St. Fullerton   
9. Arizona St.       
10. Vanderbilt       

11. Stanford       
12. Oregon St.       
13. Texas           
14. Arkansas       
15. Nebraska       
16. Kentucky       
17. Florida St.       
18. Mississippi St.   
19. Rice       
20. Central Florida   

21. Mississippi       
22. Southern California   
23. Miami (Fla.)   
24. Wichita St.       
25. North Carolina   
26. Auburn           
27. Oklahoma St.       
28. Fresno St.   
29. Louisville       
30. Clemson