Gerard Martinez |

Greg Rogers building strong relationship with Kenechi Udeze

Greg Rogers, the No. 38 overall prospect in the 2017 class, is building a stong relationship with USC defensive line coach Kenechi Udeze, who Rogers said could be a comedian.

The nation’s No. 3 ranked defensive tackle isn’t even the top-ranked player at the position in his hometown. Las Vegas (Nev.) is home to two of the best trench warriors in the country, leaving Arbor View’s Greg Rogers trailing Bishop Gorman’s Garrett Haskell.

But that doesn’t both Rogers. He’s too busy working on his craft to be caught up in what other prospects are doing. Whether it’s rankings or arguments, Rogers pays no mind.

“I don’t look at it like it’s me battling these other guys or anything like that. I just play football. I enjoy the game of football. I love the game of football. I go out here and work hard.

“I expect the guys that are next to me to work just as hard as I am. That’s how it’s supposed to be. I don’t beef with anybody. I don’t have any arguments with anybody. We just come out here and play football, man.”

While he is locked in on the field, the 6-foot-4, 298-pounder doesn’t always want to talk football away from the field. One of the things that has endeared him to USC defensive line coach Kenechi Udeze is being able to have conversations that don’t center on football.

“We talk football, but me and him just have that bond where I can just hit him up and it doesn’t always have to be about football,” Rogers said. “It can be about anything. He’s told me a lot of stories that have nothing to do with football. 

“We have a good relationship. We have to continue to keep building it because I’ve only known him for a short period of time. But it’s a really good conversation every time we talk.”

According to Rogers, Udeze keeps the conversation light at all times.

“Me and KU’s conversations are really straight jokes. He’s a really good guy. He’s a comedian. I feel like if he wasn’t a coach, he could probably pursue a standup comedian career.”

Udeze has told Rogers he will be in Las Vegas this week to catch the final days of Arbor View’s spring practice schedule. USC running backs coach Tommie Robinson also has been out to see Rogers this spring along with a slew of coaches from across the country.

“The process is going really good right now. Just continuously building relationships with the coaches. I’m trying to get a look at everybody as well as for my family too. We’re just working through it right now, enjoying it and having fun with it. There have been some big-time schools that have come by to see me so far.

“A lot of the schools are trying to stand out. They’re trying to pull from me as much as possible. A lot of them will stop by school as well as come by spring practice after school. Just being able to see all of these coaches has been a really humbling experience for me.”

Rogers said he has a few schools penciled in as early favorites, but he wasn’t willing to unveil any names just yet. He wants to discuss things with his family before he publicizes a pared down list as soon as next week. 

“I’ll discuss that with my family and then release it. I like to have my mom and dad’s approval before I do those type of things. I don’t like to reach too far. I’m still a kid, so I need to stay in my place and enjoy the recruiting process with my family.”

Expect USC to be on that list. Both Rogers and his family like USC and the connections a degree from the school can provide. Rogers also listed the Trojans’ tradition, academics and Los Angeles’ proximity as reasons he has an interest in USC.

“There’s a lot of good things about USC football and USC as a school as well.”

Check out Greg Rogers' highlights from his junior season:

USC recruiting analyst Gerard Martinez contributed to this report.

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