Kalani Sitake and his BYU staff are hard at work looking for the next BYU superstars to grace LaVell Edwards Stadium. They turned their sights to the Silver State of Nevada and found a defensive line prospect from Arbor View High School (Las Vegas, NV) that they believe fits BYU.
“Right now I’m 6-4 and I weigh 305-pounds,” said Greg Rogers. “I play defensive tackle and defensive end. I’m a really quick defensive end and know how to get off the ball fast. I’m a sure tackler who knows how to get after the ball. Playing defensive tackle, which is the main position I play now, and clogging up the middle in the run is something I do well. I [also have] some moves to get in the backfield to get to the quarterback and stuff like that. I have speed off the ball and use my hands really well and use leverage for an advantage.”
BYU joins a long list of colleges to have offered Rogers in an attempt to secure his services. Rogers, who is only a junior, is currently racking up offer after offer.
“I have [offers from] Arizona State, Arizona, Colorado State, Colorado, Utah, Washington, Washington State, NBSU, UNLV, Nevada, UCLA, USC, NAU, and BYU,” Rogers said. “I have others as well and I believe more will come.
“I’ve talked with Coach (Ed) Lamb and he’s been out here a few months ago and we’ve talked on the phone. I’ve also talked with Coach TO [Tevita Ofahengaue] and they said they’re really interested in me. Then they decided to offer me. We’ve started up a good relationship, and we’ll see where it goes from there here on out.”
For Rogers, each scholarship is considered a blessing and a new opportunity. His gratitude is evident and it’s something he doesn’t take lightly.
“It really is a blessing for me and I talk about it with my family and friends every day,” said Rogers. “It’s definitely an honor and a blessing to be recognized by so many colleges and it wouldn’t have happened without God.”
Rogers is a devout Christian and wears his faith on his sleeve. He counts every college opportunity as a gift from on high. He credits the guidance and teachings within his home from his parents as the reason for his strong faith, devotion in the classroom, and doing what’s right off the field.
“It’s all just from gifts from God along with the opportunity to keep working hard and everything,” said Rogers. “I just have to keep going out there and doing what I’m supposed to do. I’ve got my parents behind me guiding me on how I should be in the classroom and making sure my grades are up to standard. Everything has come about by doing what’s right on and off the field, and also by keeping in constant communication with God through prayer. Everything has just fallen in place for me.”
With BYU being a faith-based college, where living the basic principles of religion is as much a part of college life as is attending classes, Rogers might feel at home in Provo. He’s knows a little about BYU but as the recruiting process proceeds he’ll speak to the BYU coaches more in depth about the religious environment found on campus.
“I’m a Christian,” said Rogers. “I know BYU is a Mormon school, but they didn’t really focus too much on the religion aspect. They really didn’t talk too much about their religion; they just like me as a player. They like me as a player and they like my personality and stuff like that. They didn’t really talk too much about the religion part of the school.”
Being at a college campus that espouses and promotes a faith-based environment is something that intrigues Rogers and feels it’s an attractive opportunity worth looking in to.
“Yeah, yeah, it does,” said Rogers. “It definitely is something I’m interested in because being open to it and taking a look at it, any place that’s open to religion is something that’s an attractive situation. I want to take a look at the support of religion and when I get to talking with the coaches - as I get deeper into the conversations and relationships with them - that will be big. I’m sure we’ll have more conversations about this with the coaches at BYU as time goes on.”
Being able to live his faith without social pressure or ridicule will play a big part where he chooses to go in the end.
“That will be pretty big,” said Rogers. “I don’t want to be peer-pressured into doing anything that I feel isn’t comfortable for me. At the end of the day, I’m the one that’s going to be making the final decision. I’m just looking at everything and taking it all in and taking it slowly. I feel like these next couple of months are going to be big for me and think I could really blow up. So, I need to look at all things in all ways.”