Atlanta, Ga.--For Bernard Smith the recruiting process has been a time of indecision.
At first he thought Ole Miss was the spot for him and made a commitment, but sensing he rushed into things, he decided to have another look. That will take him on a trip to Auburn on July 14 to take part in a one-day Senior Camp on the Plains. He says it's something he's really looking forward to.
Things are good," Smith tells Inside The Auburn Tigers. "I have a visit to Auburn on July 14th for the one day camp. Me and my teammate A.J. Portee are both going down there to visit.
"Auburn is at the top of both of our lists and we're trying to decide if we both want to go to the same school. If so, we want to make sure it's Auburn. It's either going to be we both go to Auburn or he goes to Georgia Tech and I go to the University of Mississippi. We're really leaning on both coming to Auburn."
Bernard Smith is a physical player who could play a number of positions on the next level.
Currently 6-2, 215, Smith is a standout on the defensive line for Mays High, but could play a number of positions on the next level. Most schools are recruiting him as a linebacker and he did little to disprove the theory that he would make a good one at the Scout.com Combine in Atlanta in the spring ran a 4.71 40-yard dash, which was best out of all of the defensive linemen. He also turned in a position best 4.28 shuttle and 33-inch vertical along with a 9-6 broad jump. Despite those numbers he doesn't have an offer yet from the Tigers because they like him better on the defensive line.
"He (Portee) has an offer but Coach (Terry) Price has been talking about me and what position I would play," Smith says. "I went into recruiting as a linebacker, but he wants me as a defensive end. I haven't made up my mind where I want to be. At the camp I'm going to work out at defensive end and we'll see where it goes from there."
While most prospects would be nervous and looking at the camp as their opportunity to earn a scholarship, Smith says he has a different thinking on his visit to Auburn. "Really I look at it as an opportunity to see what Auburn is made of," Smith says. "I know what I have to offer, I want to see what they've got to offer as a school. If it's of equal quality or better then I would love to go there."
There is one thing that is a certainty and that is Smith's desire to win championships on the next level. He says that is the most important thing for him in choosing a program and it's the one thing that Auburn has going for it as he readies for his visit, a visit that could end happily for both sides.
"I know one thing and one thing only, they know how to win," Smith says of the Tigers. "That's all champions want to do is win. It has to be a good coaching staff if they are winning. A bad program doesn't turn out successfully. I know if I'm going to a winning team I don't have to worry about the coaching staff. It's going to be a good coaching staff and a good family environment. An unorganized school doesn't win. When you look at their record that tells you everything you need to know about a school."
Smith says he doesn't plan on taking a whirlwind tour like many top prospects do during the summer months. Instead, he says he may take one additional trip before his senior season begins and instead will work hard to leave no doubt about his ability when he hits the field this fall.
"I'm just trying to get stronger right now," Smith says. "I wasn't going to go to many camps, just Ole Miss and Auburn to be honest with you. I might go to a camp at Florida. Really, I'm just trying to get faster and stronger so when the seasons cranks up I'll leave their mouths on the floor."
Editor's Note: The video is one of the more impressive we have seen of a defensive prospect. Smith spends a lot of time at noseguard and shows exactly why Auburn likes him as a down lineman.