"I went to Ole Miss a couple weekends back and Tennessee the following weekend," Smith said. "It was great getting back to both of their campuses. I'm going to Alabama this Thursday. I was supposed to go over there last Thursday, but I had a test I needed to take so I moved it back a week."
Scout's No. 48 overall rated prospect returned to the Oxford campus with a couple things on mind.
"I haven't been down there since the LSU game. I just wanted to see if that family vibe was still there. It was. We did more of a campus tour than seeing the football facilities. I've been down there a bunch so I'm really familiar with their football complex. This trip was more about me, my mom and sister seeing the rest of the campus."
Trey wanted to get a behind the curtain look at what it's like to be a Rebel.
"I talked to as many players as I could. That was my whole objective. I wanted to see what it was like behind the scenes. I hung out with my boys Javon Patterson and Jordan Sims pretty much the whole weekend. I asked them about their coaches and asked if they were legit. Both of them backed coaches (Matt) Luke, (Maurice) Harris, and (Hugh) Freeze. They said what you get while being recruited from those guys is what you will get when you show up. There is no fakeness to them."
One thing stood out above the rest during the visit.
"I think Ole Miss has the best family environment that I've seen at any of the colleges I've visited. My sister calls it the "Rebe Daycare". There are always like 20 little kids running around every time we are down there. Everybody just brings their family around. You always see their wives and kids running around their complex. Everyone is always having a good time. I also love the relationship I have with coaches Luke and Harris. It's a great fit for me. They have great offensive tackle tradition. They'll have the No. 1 pick in the draft in Laremy Tunsil this year and have a bunch more that are playing in the league. They are bringing in Greg Little, Chandler Tuitt and Bryce Mathews to go with Javon Patterson, Rod Taylor, and those guys. I think they are building something special. You have to have special players to have a special team."
The Rebels inked the No. 1 offensive tackle in the country last year in Greg Little. Both Greg and Trey play left tackle but that's not a negative for the Rebels.
"A lot of people have been talking to me about that. My thing is wherever you go there will be competition. I look at it in from a different angle. I see Greg, Javon, Taylor, and Tuitt and see a ton of potential. I could play for the best offensive line in the country. That's the way I look at it. I watch Lecharles Bentley and study him as a person. I agree with him. A lot of people get caught up in saying you are a left tackle, but a great offensive lineman can play right tackle, guard or center. I'm going to try and start playing some guard and center at some of these combines. I want to start going up against some of the interior linemen. Go up against the big boys. I want to be an all around offensive lineman. I don't consider myself just a left tackle. I'm an offensive lineman. So no, it's not a bad thing that Greg Little is at Ole Miss. I look at it as a positive and a chance to play for one of the premier offensive lines in the country. That's how I feel about that issue."
What are the Rebels selling to Smith?
"I got a chance to sit with coach Freeze this past summer one afternoon. He told me that there is not another staff like them. I agree. Like I said earlier Ole Miss has the best family environment out of all of the schools I've visited, and a lot of that has to do with their staff. They think I'm a perfect fit for their program because of my character. I agree with that too. They want to make you a better man. They tell me that as long as I keep my character and my work habits the NFL will work itself out."
The Tennessee visit was his best to Knoxville to date.
"I haven't been up there since the Georgia game. It's been a while. Every time I go up there it's for a game. I had never had a trip up there where I could just chill out. I wanted to see what it's like on campus. I got to hang out with their players after the basketball game. It was an awesome experience. I got to see what it's like to be an every day student there. It was my best visit to Tennessee so far."
What stood out the most about the Vols during the trip?
"They also have an impressive family environment. I got to meet all of the coaches this time. Tennessee, they stress the power that comes from their program. They stressed that they want all the instate guys to stay home like they do at LSU and Clemson and Georgia. They told us that enough is enough; it's time we all come to Tennessee and help the home state school. We broke down my film and watched my tape. I got to meet a lot of the players and other recruits that were there on the trip too. It was a great visit."
The top 50 national recruit has been high on the Rebels, Vols and Tide for a while now. Has anyone else jumped into the mix?
"I really don't have any favorites right now. Those are just the schools I've visited the most. I went over to Clemson and Georgia and loved it over there as well. I plan to visit Notre Dame and Ohio State. I want to see what life is like outside the SEC or ACC."
What made the Georgia trip stand out?
"I was the first offensive lineman that coach (Sam) Pittman offered when he got there. He kind of sees me as the guy to bring their offensive line together He said they are really small on the offensive line. Their starting offensive tackle was only like 6-foot-3, 290 pounds. It was something crazy like that. He doesn't have a true offensive tackle. They have some juco and Ben Cleveland coming in, but he sees me as a player that can come make the rest of their offensive linemen better. He likes how aggressive I play. That's what he's looking for."
The Clemson trip stood out as well.
"I thought it was a very good visit. I went down there the night before the visit started and spent the night with some of their players. Coach (Dabo) Swinney has invested in his players and understands what it takes to get the job done. They have a very impressive plan for their athletic facilities too. We were very impressed with that."
The 6-foot-6, 300 pound lineman grew up a fan of Alabama.
"It's been a while since I last went down there. It was the Tennessee game. Alabama speaks for itself. Its the biggest name in college football. I grew up a Bama fan. It was cool to finally get recruited by them. When I got that phone call I was ecstatic. I remember it like yesterday."
The timeframe for a decision will be sped up as he graduates in December.
"I will release a top five this summer. I'll enroll somewhere in December so I'll make it by December. I'll probably go on my officials during the season and make a decision from there."
This offseason will be spent on betting his overall game.
"I'm going to the Nike Regional in Chicago. I can get up to Notre Dame and Ohio State while I'm up there. I'm just focused on getting a lot stronger right now. I've upped my bench from 270 pounds to 360. I'm up to 6-foot-6, 300 pounds now. I was playing at 6-foot-5, 280 during the season. I want to get quicker, bigger, stronger and all of that."
His junior season was his best to date.
"My overall quickness and domination was much better than it was a sophomore. My 10th grade season I only had like 65 pancakes. Last year I had 140. I played both ways last year too. My endurance was much better too. But make no bones about it I'm an offensive lineman. I don't like those defensive linemen. I'm not one of them. Like I said earlier I'm going to start working out at guard and center so I can become a well rounded lineman. I want to butt heads against those big defensive tackles in the interior of the line. I know what I can do against the pass rushers. I'm ready to go up against some guys my size."
Yancy Porter is the recruiting analyst for the Ole Miss Spirit and he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org