Jordon Scott has been a defensive lineman since he was 6 years old, not counting one year he tried playing the O-line. He uses his 329-pound frame to his advantage, attacking offense opponents one tackle at a time.
As an Oregon Duck, Scott has started in 20 of his 22 career games. Last season, he became a Freshman All-American, in addition to being ranked the No. 6 defensive lineman in the Pac-12.
With his freshman year behind him, Scott has used his warm-hearted personality and physical talent to become one of Oregon’s defense leaders both on and off the field.
“He’s a humble, hungry competitor,” co-defense coordinator Joe Salave’a said. “He’s always been a conscientious kid coming in. [He] has an attitude of wanting more and learning more, and he’s finding out more about himself.”
Scott enrolled in Oregon two weeks after committing to the football program in December of 2016. At the time, the 6-foot-1 nose tackle weighed close to 370 pounds. Under the training of the Division I program, Scott dropped around 40 pounds and ended his freshman season with 34 total tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and two sacks. His hard work was recognized by his teammates, as they voted him to receive the program’s Freshman of the Year Award.
Now, as a sophomore, Scott is more familiar with Oregon’s playbook and sees the game at a different pace. This preseason, the defensive lineman is on both the Bronko Nagurski and Outland Trophy watch lists, along with being a Phil Steele All-Pac-12 first team member.
“The game slowed down a little bit,” Scott said. “I know what to expect a little bit more now because I played last year, so I feel like I can see plays coming and know what type of block is coming.”
After dropping about another 10 pounds, Scott has racked up 24 total tackles in the first nine games of the season. But a lot of what Scott does for the team goes unnoticed by stats. As a nose tackle, it’s his responsibility to attract as much of the other team’s offensive linemen toward him as he can. That way his fellow defenders have more open room to follow the ball and attack the opposing quarterback.
“He’s Jordon — he’ll take three people if you need to,” senior defensive end Jalen Jelks said. “He frees up a lot of people for me to make plays and Justin [Hollins] and everybody else. So, having somebody like that [to] clog up gaps and take care of everybody else, is tremendous.”
Off the field, Jelks describes Scott as a complete goofball, making fun of himself (his Twitter handle is @Fat_Mac34) and making others feel at ease. While he aspires to be a sports analyst after graduating, head coach Mario Cristobal said he could see Scott as the president of the United States — affirming that he would have his vote in the 2036 campaign.
“He’s got that personality,” Cristobal said. “He’s a get-it-done guy and his personality is one that people gravitate to because he does the right thing. … Jordon is made of the right stuff.”