For the last couple of years, Oregon Ducks fans have enjoyed seeing Bo Nix play at the QB position. In 2022, Bo Nix passed for 3,593 yards, 29 touchdowns, and 7 interceptions. He had fourteen rushing touchdowns. This season, he would follow that with an incredible senior season that would lead him to be a finalist for the Heisman Trophy.
Bo Nix passed for 4,508 yards, 45 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions. He also has six rushing touchdowns. Nix was also named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year. It goes without saying that the QB playing for Oregon in 2024 would have some huge shoes to fail.
That quarterback would be Dillion Gabriel. Dillion Gabriel is transferring to Oregon and will be their starting QB after a two-year stint at the University of Oklahoma. I feel it is essential that Oregon Ducks fans should know a little more about their new quarterback. In this piece, we will look at five things Oregon Ducks fans need to know about Dillon Gabriel.
1. Oregon will be the 3rd team Dillon Gabriel plays for during his college football career.
Before Dillon Gabriel played for the University of Oklahoma, he had originally committed to spending the first three years of his college career playing for the University of Central Florida. During his career at Central Florida, Dillon Gabriel threw for over 8,000 yards and 68 touchdowns. Dillon Gabriel played for Central Florida from 2018 to 2020. Gabriel’s tenure in Central Florida ended when he announced via social media that he was transferring from the university in November 2021. After initially stating that he would transfer to UCLA, Gabriel changed his mind and announced that he would transfer to Oklahoma instead. Thus, the Oregon Ducks will be the 3rd team that Dillon Gabriel has played for.
2. Dillon Gabriel made an immediate impact in his freshmen year.
One thing that cannot be said about Dillon Gabriel is that he is a late bloomer. While he was at Central Florida in 2019, Gabriel would end up taking the place of then-starting QB Brandon Wimbush.
Dillon Gabriel would go on to pass for 3,653 yards, 27 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions. He would lead the Central Florida Knights to a 10-3 record and a berth in the Gasparilla Bowl. Gabriel would pass for 260 yards and two touchdowns during the Gasparilla Bowl. Central Florida defeated the Marshall Thundering Herd 48-25.
This shows that Dillon Gabriel has been impacting the college football landscape for a long time. His experience should translate well to his new role as the starting QB of the Oregon Ducks.
3. Dillon Gabriel was the conference leader in passing yards and passing touchdowns twice.
During Dillon Gabriel’s long career, he was the best quarterback in his conference multiple times. This occurred in 2020 and 2023. In 2020, Dillon Gabriel led the American Athletic Conference with 3,570 passing yards and 32 touchdowns at Central Florida. This past season he led the Big 12 with 3,660 yards and 30 touchdowns last season at Oklahoma. He also led the conference in completion percentage for the 1st time in his career this season.
Under the tutelage of Dan Lanning, I would not be surprised if he achieves this feat again this season.
4. Dillon Gabriel has earned quite a few accolades.
Dillon Gabriel immediately impacted the Big 12 once he transferred to Oklahoma from Central Florida. In 2022, Dillon Gabriel threw for 3,168 passing yards and 25 touchdowns. Even though the Oklahoma Sooners were 6-6 that year, Gabriel’s performance that season earned him the Big 12 Offensive Newcomer of the Year. He was also named second-team All-Big 12 in 2022.
In 2020, he was named to the American Athletic Conference’s (AAC) 2nd team at Central Florida. This past season, Dillon Gabriel was named First-Team All-Big-12 in 2023.
Thus, the fanbase of the Oregon Ducks can rest assured that Dillon Gabriel is a proven quarterback with proven success.
5. Dillon Gabriel was the top high school football player in Hawaii.
Dillon Gabriel was born in Mililani, Hawaii, and rose to prominence as the top high school player in the state. During his senior year, he threw for 3,754 yards and 38 touchdowns. As a result of his efforts, he was named the Gatorade High School Foot Player of the Year in Hawaii. As a recipient of the award, he could donate $1,000 to a youth sports organization of his choice. He gave it to the youth sports organization that helped him get his start in football.
Gabriel amassed over 10,000 passing yards and over 100 touchdowns in his high school career.