C.J. Walker Signs with Oregon

Channai Williams, Sports Editor

Oak Ridge senior forward C.J. Walker announced last week that he plans to play for the Oregon Ducks next year.

Walker had scholarship offers from Oregon, LSU, Miami. and other Division I schools but opted to play for Ducks coach Dana Altman. Oregon failed to qualify for the NCAA Tournament last year but the Ducks reached the Final Four in 2017 and the Elite Eight in 2016.

Oregon also announced recently that forward Chandler Lawson and junior college transfer Chris Duarte, a guard, would join the team next fall.

The Pioneers’ 6-foot-8 star forward led Orlando Christian Prep to a state title last year but opted to transfer to Oak Ridge to play for Steve Reece, who is also the coach of Walker’s AAU team, Reach 1 Teach 1.

Some thought Walker might verbally commit to LSU, which landed former Pioneer Antonio Blakeney, now with the Chicago Bulls, and, more recently, Emmitt Williams, who helped the Pioneers win its first basketball state championship last March.

Walker recently scored 13 points with 10 rebounds against Edgewater.