June 3, 2010

Smith's offers number 15

It was a noteworthy week for Orlando linebacker/defensive back LaQuentin Smith, who pulled in scholarship offers from Purdue and Florida International to go along with the 12 he previously claimed.

Smith's offer list is impressive and contains Colorado State, Tennessee, FIU, Purdue, Illinois, WVU, South Carolina, South Florida, Arkansas, Cincinnati, Memphis, Michigan, and Central Florida.

Smith, a 6-foot-2, 205-pound defender from Dr. Phillips High School, filled up the stat sheet last year, posting 97 tackles, six tackles for a loss, seven pass break-ups, four forced fumbled and even caught three passes on offense. Smith runs a 40-yard dash in 4.6 seconds and has a grade-point average of 3.0.

The Colorado State Rams are hoping their recent pipeline to Dr. Phillips High School will net them their sixth Panther to Fort Collins in the last three years. CSU has sent offensive coordinator Pat Meyer to Orlando in hopes of convincing Smith Fort Collins is the place for him. Smith said he plans on visiting CSU and is constantly hearing about CSU from current Ram quarterback and former Panther, Nico Rainieri.

Purdue offers Smith a scholarship this week and told him that they play both a 4-3 and a 3-4 scheme, which means he could play either strong safety or linebacker if he ends up in West Lafayette. In addition to Purdue, Smith said he has been hearing from the head man of the Illinois Fighting Illini, Ron Zook, who has told him the Orange and Blue need defensive backs and chances are he could play early.

Coach Cedric Calhoun of Florida International offered Smith a scholarship this week, while David Lockwood of West Virginia also contacted Smith. The Tennessee Volunteers tried convincing Smith there is no place like the SEC for football and are trying to get him to come up for a visit.

He said despite the offers, he has yet to put together a list of favorites, but hopes to by the end of summer conditioning. He said he is ultimately looking for a school that can show him a family atmosphere and makes him feel at home. Until he finds that, he is having a good time looking at schools.

"No, I don't have any favorites," Smith said. "I am just enjoying the recruiting process. I am having fun."

Smith said he also had a good time during spring football, which ended for Dr. Phillips High School last week.

"Spring football went really well," Smith said. "We just finished up last week and won our spring game 42-7 over East Ridge. I feel like I got better, the team got better too. I think I have been leading the right way, doing the right things in the football field and the classroom for the younger players coming up."

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