Smits sees Clemson again

Derrik Smits and his father, who played for 12 seasons in the NBA, visited Clemson in the fall for the football game against Wake Forest.

C Derrik Smits Profile

Rik Smits, who's also known as The Dunkin' Dutchmen, spent his entire career with the Indiana Pacers, many of which were alongside former Clemson standout Dale Davis.

Davis and the Smits were in Tigertown over the weekend for the basketball team's regular season finale against Pittsburgh. The younger Smits is a three-star center from Zionsville Community High School in Indiana.

"I had a lot of fun. We really enjoyed it, got to see a fun game," Derrik told CUTigers, during a recent interview.

He added, "Just seeing the atmosphere in the basketball gym. That was pretty cool. I enjoyed that, just how crazy they can get."

The 6-foot-11, 215-pound junior is being recruited to Clemson by associate head coach Mike Winiecki.

"I got to talk to coach Winiecki a lot. Just got to sit down and talk to him," Smits said. "Last time, we didn't really get to sit down and talk. It was just them offering me, just talking to them, talking about the team and what they try to do."

Smits, who was informed of the offer during the football game he attended back in September, is comfortable with what he's seen around town in Clemson.

"The campus is amazing. I really like it. It's a real nice campus," he said. "It's not a huge college town, but it's a big enough college town. I don't want too big too big of a college town, but it's enough to still get a taste of it and that's pretty fun."

Winiecki, the Tigers' big man coach, has also made favorable impression.

"I think he's a pretty great coach. Their big guys know how to play," Smits said. "They get their big guys the ball a lot, not just necessarily on the block, but they can spread the floor. I like that, like seeing that. They don't play just necessarily on the block. There's some versatility and he knows how to coach that."

One of several former players back in town for the Clemson basketball reunion, Davis spoke to the younger Smits about life as a Clemson basketball player.

"He said it was a fun place to play," Smits said.

With offers from Clemson, Xavier and Butler, Smits remains in contact with Purdue, Notre Dame and Gonzaga, among others.

There is no leader.

"[It's] too early, I'm just taking it all in, waiting for a few more months before really narrowing down and searching for the school that's the best for me," Smits said.

As a junior, he averaged 10.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.5 assists per game.

CUTigers.com Top Stories