Tre Greene was on his way to play college football at Arizona State this past December, but a class transfer mix up at the junior college level left him hanging high and dry with a future in college football uncertain.
“My recruiting got messed up a lot in December,” said Greene. “I was supposed to go up to Arizona State in December, but I needed a stats class that came out late and it didn’t transfer over from my last college. I was supposed to leave in December but that whole thing messed up a lot of my recruiting, because coaches got other guys to fill my spot. I’m in a stats class now and I’m passing with an A, so I think a lot of the coaches just kind of forgot about me on signing day.”
Falling through the recruiting cracks, Greene thought his dream of playing college football were over and done with. That is, until BYU entered the picture from out of nowhere.
“Yeah, I thought that dream was passing me by and I was just going to be a straight track guy,” said Greene. “I was talking to Humboldt, San Jose State, and I was talking to Cal for track. It caught a lot of their attention that I didn’t start running track till my junior year in high school, but this past year I was doing really well.
“I was actually thinking that football was passing me by because when you go the junior college route it will either make or break you. Not a lot of people understand that route, and it takes patience and a lot of believing in God. I had another route I was going to try and go through, but that doesn’t even matter now. I was just going to give up on football and go the track route.”
Then something fast and furious occurred from out of nowhere. Greene was informed that BYU wanted him to come on an official visit over the weekend of BYU’s annual spring game.
“They were very interested in me the very first time I ever talked with them,” said Greene. “The first time I had ever spoken with a BYU coach in my life was this past Thursday, and then the next day I was on a visit.”
So, he quickly packed his bags and left on a plane to Provo the following day to tour the campus and see what this place called Provo and BYU was all about.
“The tour was actually great and I like the school and people around there were really nice,” said a rather surprised Greene. “I met a couple of people out there and they were nice. The biggest thing for me will be the culture shock because I’ve been in California my whole life, and out there in Utah it’s all Mormons and everyone knows that. I am Christian and believe in God so that part of being out there won’t be a problem, but being from California where everything is fast and Provo is a smaller town. I don’t drink and I don’t smoke or do any those things, so I’ll fit in there but it is a small town.”
While Provo might be a smaller town than what he’s used to, Greene did like the environment and the quality of people he was surrounded by.
“The people there were very hart-warming while I was out there so I loved that,” said Greene. “That’s what I saw in the coaches and the team as well. It’s like family. That is really hard to find in today’s society. You won’t find that level of friendliness in many places, and that’s what I loved about being out there.”
While on campus, Greene met with his old high school friend, and current BYU running back, Squally Canada and was able to get another perspective about being at BYU.
“Squally is my boy from high school and I’ve known him for a long time. He gave me a rundown of the whole program and gave me the truth,” Greene said. “He had nothing bad to say, and everything he told me was all positive.”
Greene has even seen how BYU has changed his old friend Squally.
“Yeah, I could see how he’s changed when I came out for my official visit,” Greene said. “He’s very mature and his head in on straight and he knows what he wants. He’s grown a lot.”
The concerns Greene had about Provo and BYU were quickly whipped away. While BYU might not be in a major city, the people, environment, and misconceptions he first held where quickly dispelled.
“I’m really excited to come play for BYU,” said Greene. “I really enjoyed my time out there on my official visit and was really welcomed by the team and coaches. My boy Squally goes there and it was great seeing him. The team looks great and the receivers they have there have good hands and run good routes. The defense looks good and they ball out and I’m excited to come be a part of it.”
Greene was offered after getting to know the coaches for only a day or two, but in that time he had seen and learned enough to know that BYU was a special place and a place where he wanted to be. However, this was a life changing opportunity that almost didn’t happened.
“Well, I wasn’t going to come,” Greene said bluntly. “I just didn’t think BYU would be a place for me and a lot of things had to happen for me to make it.”
In order for Greene to visit he would have to cancel work, a track meet, and miss football practice in order to visit a place he knew nothing about and didn’t have much interest in. His father caused him to take pause, think about what might occur, then convinced him to take that trip to BYU.
“Unfortunately my parents weren’t able to come because they both own businesses and were out of state,” said Greene. “I had to take off work to come out there. I wasn’t going to come out because I had to take off from so many things, but my dad talked me into it and told me how important it was for me to go.”
The one choice to take that flight changed his life forever. Greene was offered and soon afterwards he committed fulfilling his dreams of playing college ball. Looking back he’s now grateful he listened to his father.
“Oh yes, yes, yes, for sure because it was a lot different than I thought it was going to be,” said Greene. “It was a lot better and I really enjoyed my time there. I’m glad I listened to my dad because now I’m committed to the school.
“This whole experience has changed my life and given me a new chance. It is kind of scary to think about how I almost didn’t come. If I hadn’t made the decision to take off work, football practice, my track meet, and listen to my dad I would have missed this opportunity to get a scholarship to play division one football at a great university.”
Currently, Greene has three to play three at BYU. However, there is a chance he could have four to play four if all goes as planned.
“I’m a freshman now, well kind of I guess and it all depends really, and have three to play three,” said Greene. “Chabot was my first year of playing football out of high school. I actually went to a college at San Mateo first but the coaching situation wasn’t right for me, so I transferred over to Chabot where the coaches were great.
“At Chabot they counted a year against me even though I never played that year, so to them I used up two years of eligibility and this was my last year. I wasn’t even at the other school for a year and they counted that against me. So, BYU is in the process of getting that year back for me, and if all goes well I’ll get that back and that one year will count as a redshirt year for me so I’ll have four to play four.”
It’s easier to see why Greene thought his football playing days were pretty much over. He was being considered a sophomore with no college football options on the table. Now a BYU Cougar, Coach Lamb and Gilford are going to go to battle on Greene’s behalf to get that year back.
“I was talking to the coaches and they said it shouldn’t be a problem getting that year back for me,” Greene said. “Coach Gilford and Coach Lamb said it’s not hard to do and they should get it.”
With the new staff’s emphasis on developing and maximizing BYU football players for a chance at a career in the NFL is also an opportunity that Greene almost let go as well.
“It makes me excited to know BYU is really focused on sending players to the next level,” Greene said. “It’s great to know that the coaches there will give me the support to get me to the next level. It makes me excited.”
Greene said he’ll be signing with BYU over the next week or so then will be moving out to Utah in the summer to get an early start in the off-season workouts with the team in preparation for fall camp.
“I plan on singing later this week once they finalize my scholarship papers,” Greene said. “I’m grateful for this new opportunity in my life and it really is a blessing for me. It’s hard to explain knowing what I’ve gone through. Yeah they gave me another chanced and I really appreciated what these coaches have done for me. That’s why I committed to them so fast. They believed in me and took a chance on me. I felt like everything was good there and they’re men of their word and I couldn’t be happier with how things worked out for me after all that I’ve been through.”
As a 6-4, 190-pound cornerback, Greene will sign with BYU later this week. Oh, and about his speed. Well, his track times should explain why Coach Lamb and Gilford were so adamant about getting him to BYU.
“I only run the 100 and 200 and my fastest time this year is from my 100,” said Greene. “I’ve done four track meets so far this year, and my fastest time this year was a 10.74 in the 100 and a 22 flat in the 200. I’ve got a big meet this week at Stanford and a lot of division one guys will be there. Not that many junior guys will be there, so it’s a pretty big meet.”
His self-reported hand and laser forty time is incredible, which he said he can verify if needed.
“I did my forty time at my school,” said Greene. “It’s actually a 4.31 for an unofficial time and we have it on paper at my school, and I can get that for you if you want it. That was an unofficial hand-time, but for an official time I’ve been clocked at a 4.34.”
Greene will be out in Provo in June to get an early jump during off-season workouts.
“I talked to Coach Gilford and then I talked to Coach Lamb and they said they were happy for me to be a part of the family,” Greene said. “They said it was time to go to work when I come out there this June.”