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2023 Defensive End Jayden Wayne Discusses Oregon Visit With New Coaching Staff

The new Oregon staff has wasted no time prioritizing one of the region's top prospects.

The new Oregon staff has made it clear that they want to continue expanding the program's national brand. However, that won't come at the expense of overlooking top prospects much closer to Eugene.

A prime example is 2023 Lincoln (Tacoma, Wash.) High School defensive end Jayden Wayne, who was in town for a visit over the weekend. The visit served as his first chance to meet the new staff under Dan Lanning, and the initial returns are overwhelmingly positive.

The trip was one that wasn't initially on the schedule, but the staff was more than happy to host him.

"It was a random trip because my flights for North Carolina were cancelled," Wayne said of why he decided to visit.

Despite the sudden nature of the trip, Wayne came away impressed with what he saw, and perhaps more importantly, who he met. 

"The coaching staff," he said of what stood out most on his recent trip. "The DC [Tosh] Lupoi and me talked a lot about football."

Lupoi is a name Oregon fans have wanted on the staff for a long time, largely in part to his ability to build rapport with and land top-level prospects. We saw that recruiting savvy on display last week when the staff visited former cornerback commit Jahlil Florence in home following the end of the dead period, a visit that went past 2 o'clock in the morning.

Lupoi is one of numerous coaches who are intrigued by the skillset the 6-foot-5, 243-pound trench talent brings to the table. However, his approach to Wayne's recruitment may be what separates the Ducks from other schools.

"He breaks the game down easy for me," Wayne said of Oregon's newly-minted defensive coordinator. "He's going to push me hard. He sees NFL potential in me. I feel I can be developed and succeed with them."

Wayne also had plenty of good things to say about Head Coach Dan Lanning.

"He's a great leader. He wants the best for his players. He doesn't settle. He wants to win."

The most recent trip to take in the Ducks is far from the first for Wayne, who's made numerous visits to Oregon over the course of his recruitment. 

But what makes the Ducks legitimate contenders?

"I can represent a big brand [like] Nike. I can be around teammates and coaches that want to win a natty. I feel really good about the coaches."

The new staff, led by Lanning, has also started building a strong relationship with Wayne's family, who accompanied him on the trip.

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"They loved it," he said of his family's thoughts on the trip. "Coach Lanning and my family have a great relationship. The same things for me stood out to them."

The Washington product plans to make a return trip to Eugene in the future, but in the mean time will focus on three upcoming trips. 

Next weekend he'll visit Miami to see former Oregon Head Coach Mario Cristobal, and he'll stop in Los Angeles to visit USC. January will be capped off by a trip to the hometown University of Washington, a program led by new Head Coach Kalen Deboer. Wayne also added Texas, Alabama and North Carolina were other trips in the works.

With so many schools giving chase, a select group have been contacting him the most. 

"Alabama, Miami, USC, Oregon, Auburn and Texas," he said.

As he continues to meet new coaching staffs and visit campuses, is he any closer to a decision?

"I'll have a top 10 list soon. I want to graduate early so I want to take official visits in April."

As he navigates the more than 35 offers to his name, Wayne has certain boxes his future school will need to check.

"Be loyal and consistent. Treat me and my family like family."

*Watch Jayden Wayne Highlights here*

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