AUSTIN, Texas -- There are few things that make a coaching staff happier than finding a legacy with the skills to play for them and then securing a quick commitment, exactly how it went down for the BYU Cougars and Abilene (Texas) wide receiver Trey Dye, who pledged back in February.
His father, James Dye, played wide receiver for BYU in 1995 and 1996, and to say that he was a dynamic player on special teams would be an understatement -- he returned five kicks and punts for touchdowns during those two years and then spent a brief time in the NFL with the Miami Dolphins.
"I've kind of been around the program since I was growing up," Dye said on Saturday at the Round Rock SQT. "Even when I was a baby when he was still playing, I was about a year old, spending time around the BYU program, going to games when I was younger before I moved here to Texas. It's just something I always wanted to be a part of, especially the tradition. That's where I wanted to go, that's where my heart was."
Initially recruited by running backs coach and recruiting coordinator Joe DuPaix, who came down to Abilene to personally evaluate the 5'9, 175-pounder, Dye was afraid that when DuPaix was let go in January it also signaled the end of his recruitment by the Cougars, who fell out of contact for some time.
In early February, however, Dye returned home from school and his father told him to contact the BYU coaching staff, at which time the long-awaited offer was extended. The younger Dye said that he spent about two weeks praying about the decision and discussing the offer with his parents and coaches before he asked himself a question that helped make up his mind.
"I decided that if anyone else did offer me, would I want to go there?" Dye said of his thought process. "I thought about those things, and I have a lot of family in Utah. It will be good to get back, and I love the tradition and my family ties to the school."
Having spent so much time around the Cougar program, there's plenty that the high two-star prospect likes about the school.
"I love gameday, going to the sold out stadium every week and hearing 65,000 screaming fans. I love the mountains, just growing up there. I love the weather. I love the uniforms, the all-white uniforms," he said, rattling off a pretty extensive list.
The fit in Provo is a strong one in the BYU offense, as the coaching staff has talked about using him in a similar way to Cooper, which lined him up in the backfield at times as a running back as a junior, an area in which Dye was successful as a former full-time running back in his younger days, as he averaged 8.8 yards per carry. He calls it a "natural" position for him, even feeling comfortable running inside the tackles.
At first, offensive coordinator Robert Anae wanted Dye in the slot, a position that fits his build well, but after seeing him run the ball in practice decided that the speedy athlete with reported 4.50 speed could also handle carrying the ball as well. Dye's still working on developing his route-running abilities because of his lack of experience at the position, but he says that he's been blessed to have it come naturally to him, just as running back did.
A confident kid, Dye believes that he has a variety of attributes that will help him become successful in college, including his durability, versatility and quickness. However, he's also humble enough to recognize that he needs to keep putting in the work with his quarterback, Texas commit Lorenzo Joe, to keep improving.
Sum it all up?
"I'm a ballplayer," Dye said.
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