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  • Writer's pictureAlex Brown

Listen Now to Episode 11 - Featuring Trey Johnson

USC's Director of Scouting & Recruiting Strategy, Trey Johnson jumped on the show this week to talk about his role at USC and how he approaches the recruiting game.

In this week's episode, we take a deep dive into the strategy involved in recruiting and effective approaches to building a "gameplan" for targeted recruits.

Trey's main focus is doing your homework on the front end, to assist in building deeper connections and relationships but also in order to best structure the on-campus experience.

When it comes to recruiting, Trey's keys to success are:

  1. Know the Background of the Recruit

  2. Identify the Champion of the Recruit

  3. Be Genuine

It's pretty simple, but it's truly spot on.

Winning championships is what everyone in the country wants to do, and we all can agree that building a roster filled with talent and developing a winning culture is where that starts. This conversation ultimately hits on the side of developing a winning culture by bringing in the right type of people, first and foremost. You cannot sacrifice the identity or character of your team for talent, and that starts with doing your homework on recruits and what's important to them.

Another point to bring up is Trey's thought process on building a progression through multiple on campus visits. Nobody likes hearing the same recruiting spiel over and over again, and the allure of the first photo shoot wanes fast. How do you stay relevant on the minds of recruits? Mix it up. Change the approach and tweak the experience.

Ideas in the recruiting world are gold, and Trey did a great job of discussing how he and the staff at USC attempt to bring more unique ideas to the table.

For those that like to jump around, here's your guide for this week's episode:

  • Life During COVID and Silver Linings (3:20)

  • "Big Shot Trey" Origins & Noon-Ball (7:34)

  • Background Research & Identifying the Champion (9:55)

  • What Makes Gavin Morris & Donte Williams Such Great Recruiters (14:41)

  • Influences from Trey's Experiences at Tennessee & Liberty (18:50)

  • Learning From Others & Asking Questions (22:27)

  • Trey's Journey in Football (28:50)

  • Getting a foot in the door with Tennessee (33:28)

  • Lessons Learned at UT & Trey's Transition to Liberty (37:02)

  • Growing & Developing A Recruiting Department (43:17)

  • Topic of the Week: The Strategy Involved In The Recruiting Process (57:37)

  • Staying Fresh & Cutting Edge with New Ideas (1:00:31)

  • Taking The Right Approach with Targeted Recruits (1:02:17)

  • Building Progression Into Multiple Campus Visits (1:06:16)

  • Listener Questions (1:10:10)

  • Sendoff Advice for Recruits, Parents & Coaches (1:17:06)

Thanks as always for taking time to listen to Up Close In Personnel with Alex Brown! If you want to follow Trey on Twitter, you can follow him at @ThisIsTreyJ!

And if you haven't already, be sure to subscribe, rate and share the show!

Send in your questions for the next episode by commenting below or via email at and check my Twitter on Monday for the announcement of our next guest on the show!

Thank you as always for your time, stay blessed & stay safe! -AB

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