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Listen Now to Episode 19 - Featuring Darrick Yray

Oregon State's Director of Player Personnel, Darrick Yray joined us to talk about his journey to Corvallis and drop some recruiting knowledge!


Our conversation with Darrick spans all things related to recruiting and personnel. We talk about the role of serving as Director of Player Personnel, diving deep into leadership and management advice early on.



One thing that really stood out for me was when Darrick talked through his mindset of wanting to make the lives of his assistants easier, because at the end of the day "if they're operating smoothly, I'm operating smoothly."



We talk through the importance of taking responsibility for the growth and development of your assistants. That can apply to any mid level manager in business, sports or otherwise.



From a recruiting perspective, he listed five key qualities of top recruiters:

  • Good Heart: Have the recruit's best interest in mind

  • Meticulous: Detailed and relentless in approach

  • Humble: "There's two types of people: those who are humble & those who are about to be"

  • Relatability: Have to be able to connect with recruit & family

  • Ability to Walk Away: The evaluation process never stops

We also talked about evaluating recruits, both as athletes and people. Physically, recruiters need to rely on verified numbers -both for measurements and for athleticism testing. That's how we can best determine the future outlook or projection of a player.

Then, as you get into the recruitment process, paying attention to social media activity can paint a very clear picture of who a player is. Darrick says in the episode, "If you listen closely enough, kids will tell you who they are."

Lastly, we had to talk about "Last Chance U" and transfer recruiting. For Darrick, the world of transfer recruiting is college football's version of the "waiver wire". His process is all about the fit and the why.

How does the player fit on the field with the team (ability) and fit in the locker room (character)? The why refers to reason(s) for transferring in the first place, along with the question "does he love football?"

This is a great episode for anyone wanting to learn how to run a department in recruiting or personnel, so I hope you enjoy listening!


As I do each and every week, here is a breakdown of topics covered:

  • Responding to the Adversity of COVID in Recruiting (2:57)

  • Darrick's Approach to Leadership & Management (9:55)

  • Common Traits Among Top Recruiters (11:28)

  • Examples of Top Recruiters & Darrick's Influences (16:11)

  • Searching for Any Competitive Advantage (20:08)

  • Walk-On Wannabe to Coaching & Personnel (23:45)

  • The Benefit of Operations Experience in Recruiting (26:49)

  • Defining Leadership & Lessons Learned in Corvallis (29:23)

  • Navigating Head Coach Turnover in Recruiting (32:14)

  • Breaking Down the Role of a DPP (34:30)

  • Evaluating Insights & Projecting Underclassmen (38:08)

  • What the Month of August Looks Like in Recruiting (42:03)

  • Learning from & Serving NFL Scouts as the Pro Liaison (46:01)

  • Managing the "Waiver Wire" & Transfer Recruiting (49:34)

  • Last Chance U & the Wright Brothers (55:14)

  • Sendoff Advice to Recruits, Parents and HS Coaches (59:06)


Be sure to follow Darrick and his work with Oregon State Football on Twitter at @dyray22!


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

Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/up-close-in-personnel-with-alex-brown/id1504584632

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/4cJF0i5vbrsCGmszwLnNwD?si=YHFpnwdKQjytBpEBTzp2xw

iHeartRadio: https://www.iheart.com/podcast/269-up-close-in-personnel-with-62164638/?cmp=ios_share&sc=ios_social_share&pr=false&autoplay=true

Stitcher: https://stitcher.com/s?fid=516832

Google: https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly9mZWVkLnBvZGJlYW4uY29tL1VwQ2xvc2VJblBlcnNvbm5lbC9mZWVkLnhtbA

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©2020 by Director of Recruiting for Rice University Football, Alex Brown