Orgeron at West LA Trojan Club

Wednesday evening I attended the West L.A. Trojan club meeting in Marina del Rey. It is held in the Fonda Del Rey restaurant which has a private meeting room upstairs and holds about 50 people comfortably. Usually that is sufficient, but they had Ed Orgeron speak and the room was full of 70 people.

Wednesday evening I attended the West L.A. Trojan club meeting in Marina del Rey. It is held in the Fonda Del Rey restaurant which has a private meeting room upstairs and holds about 50 people comfortably. Usually that is sufficient, but they had Ed Orgeron speak and the room was full of 70 people. The restaurant staff did a good job under the circumstances but things were a bit crowded.
The Thundering Herd had a long table along one wall and lived up to their mission statement by exuding enthusiasm and a "stand up" public posture. Twice during the dinner they did the Southern California spell out loud enough so that Trojans sitting on their boats in the Marina must have felt right at home.
Sam Anno, the great Trojan linebacker, was there helping move the meeting along. He looks to be in terrific shape and could suit-up right now.
Acoustics were not the best and there was no microphone so I cannot be sure that I caught every word. This report paraphrases the questions and answers to the best of my ability. If others who were there have additional information, their contributions are appreciated.
I think the crowd was enlarged by the fact that Orgeron is the recruiting coordinator and has a reputation for giving straight answers. Those of us who follow recruiting closely feel we can rely on Ed to give us good information.
Ed began by reviewing the class player-by-player. You can imagine that he has a lot of pride in these players and described in detail the huge potential they bring to the program. Additionally he talked about the things these players are allowed to do right now to prepare themselves for next season. The sense of his remarks was that the day after LOI were signed, their immersion into the team was underway.
A question was asked about the disappointment of having two recruits from Poly last year not qualify and how that affected recruiting from that school this year. The questioner asked how he could be so positive that the same disappointment would not re-occur. Ed is an expressive person in his facial and body language and we could feel the frustration of those disappointments just by looking at him. His response was that we, as a program, had learned from those experiences and that when we target recruits early, we develop a recommended academic program for them. The sense I came away with was that we are encouraging targeted recruits to take the right classes and preparatory studies so that they have the best chance of being eligible.
A question was asked about why we did not play Cody at his natural position of DE. He said that while Cody is so good he could play either position; his "real" natural position is not what we all thought originally but is in fact DT.
I asked him, "Coach, how many offensive linemen would you feel should be in this next class?" Without any hesitation, he said: "Five". He then paused and added, "they all have to be players". Someone else asked, "then do you think we'll take 5 OL's every year?" and he responded that the number would depend on how many graduated in each senior class.
Second, he said that they are already heavily into recruiting the next class and that three blue chippers were on campus that day. No, he would not give their names but it is certainly what I like to hear.
With his aggressive style, you might think that he could be a "bull in a china shop", but that is not the case at all. When he's asked sensitive questions he responds with diplomacy. He was asked about the differences between working with Hackett and Carroll and he gave a diplomatic answer. He said, "working with coach Carroll was different in that he was more 'personally involved'". He was asked to identify the player in this class who was most likely to make a major contribution to the team next season. He said, "invite me back next year and I'll tell you".
The subject of a balanced recruiting class was raised and Ed quipped that as our DL coach, his idea of a balanced class was 12 DT's and 12 DE's. I can see why he is so good at his job. People like him.
Ed was asked about the impact of the loss to Utah on recruiting.  He responded with a report on how the staff just sucked it up and would not allow anything to take away from the momentum of the 27-0 victory over UCLA. He said that he and PC had called every one of our recruits the day after the loss to Utah.  He reported that their conclusion was that our position was stable.
He was asked if we got everyone in this recruiting class that we wanted.  He said "almost", then he thought a bit and said there were three players we really wanted who went other directions.  He said they were Landri, and McKnight to ND and Lewis to ...
I will probably think of something I left out of this report and when I do, I will post it on the board.  My primary reaction to the event is that I am thankful that Ed Orgeron is a Trojan and on our side.

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