Smith Stays Focused

Alabama routinely lands top-notch recruits with high ceilings from all over the country, and the class of 2013 is rounding out into the same. The lone Texan on the commitment list, Maurice Smith, is as solid as ever to the Tide but he's not worried about the process at the moment. The four-star DB details his focus now and going forward, inside.

Alabama's pursuit of bigger cornerbacks successfully continued in the class of 2013 when Maurice Smith committed to the program on June 7. The 6-foot-1, 175-pounder out of Sugar Land (Tx.) Dulles High has been selling the program ever since.

As both his current Dulles teammates and future Alabama teammates separately prepare for their first games of the 2012 season on Friday and Saturday, respectfully - it has the makings of a memorable weekend for Smith.

"I'll be out there one-deep," he said with a laugh, referring to Alabama's opener against Michigan.

Though he won't travel with fellow recruits or commits, he said he is expecting to rendezvous with O.J. Howard and Altee Tenpenny at Cowboys Stadium, where the game is taking place on Saturday. Fellow commits Cooper Bateman and Anthony Averett are also trying to make it to Jerry-World.

But until then, Smith's focus remains the same.

"I'm just focused on staying eligible and getting all A's,' said the four-star cornerback, who is currently the No. 7-ranked player at his position nationally. "I'm focusing on my game, not really paying too much attention to recruiting coaches and anything of that nature."

While the phone keeps ringing from other coaches and staff, it's the outgoing calls that still mean more to the Crimson commit.

"I call my coaches, most of the time we talk about how everything is going for practice with me and them, too," said Smith. "When it comes to my Alabama coaches, I try to have a conversation with them – I actually call them as much as I can."

Before the versatile defensive back gets on the horn with coaches, he improves his craft with game-week preparations in practice with a routine that he says helped got him to where he's at.

"At practice, we have a certain day of the week…our defensive coach goes through the plays they run and all that so we get a chance to practice hard against that," he said. "He also sends us film to our Hudl accounts…so I'll study the receiver when it's a run and when it's a pass.

"My dad and Ray Lewis were film gurus, so they find little things like that to get a good understanding on how he comes off the ball every play."

As recruiting comes after practice, school comes before football in the Smith household – something that has helped the talented senior to keep a level head throughout his individual success.

"My parents have always told me to put God before everything, but after that – in terms of where I'm trying to get in life – is to always put your books second," he admitted. "I never really slipped up on my grades because they've always made me put that first, so I really focus on that."

Smith's focus on priority has helped him get to this point in his young career, but expanding on his game off the field only creates a desire to do so on the field as well. Especially the further football takes him.

"It's really my technique," he said of his football focus. "The physical ability part is always going to be there. My dad is always telling me, that's only going to take you so far. After that, it's technique.

"I keep making sure that my back-pedal is low at all times, my jamming is always on-point and my tackling technique is always there."

Smith plans on studying either kinesiology, mechanical engineering or broadcasting in college.


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