On the recruiting trail, Idaho continues to make inroads into the sunshine state. Currently seven athletes hale from Florida, including starting wide receiver Jacob Sannon. Last year Idaho signed three Floridians in Jante Boston (Riboult High, Jacksonville), Eric Hale (Lake Minneola High, Orlando), and Calvary Pugh (Forest Hills High, West Palm Beach). They aren’t done mining the Sunshine State yet either.
Last year Idaho also picked up three outstanding in-state hosses in Zion Dixon (6-4, 313, Coeur d’Alene), Tanner Mauseth (6-8, 275, Pocatello), and Conner Vrba (6-4, 288, Meridian). Dixon and Mauseth are with the team now, and although Dixon has had the strongest fall camp and has practiced well with the second unit, Mauseth may have the biggest upside. Vrba is grayshirting this fall and will start honing his craft when he joins the program in January.
So what joins these two topics? Seneca Smith, a big (6-3, 275) offensive line prospect out of Deltona High located between Orlando and Daytona Beach.
Smith committed to Idaho in on July 29th and became the first known commitment to the Idaho program for the recruiting class of 2016. His recruitment was led by Idaho assistant coach Kenny Holmes, a Florida native and All-American with the Miami Hurricanes who spent time in the NFL with the Tennessee Titans. He’s working to set a net around Florida and expand Idaho’s recruiting presence in a state loaded with high school talent.
One of the main reasons Smith picked Idaho was the relationship he’s built with Holmes and others on the Idaho staff. “I felt like if I came to the University of Idaho,” Smith told GoVandals.net, “I’ll be so far from home, but it won’t seem that far away because Coach Holmes -- he’s from Florida. I was getting recruited by a couple other schools like FAU and UTSA and other schools like that, but Idaho showed me the most love”
Smith will be looking to take his official visit to the Moscow campus later this fall.
THE STARTING LEFT TACKLE at Deltona, Smith is likely going to be moving inside to guard for the Vandals. A couple things stand out when watching his film. First, he’s big. Second, for a big man he’s quick off the ball – he has a great first step. Third, he engages a defender well with his hands, particularly in pass protection. He’ll need to work on pad level while at UI, but he’s aggressive on the field – something that is difficult to teach.
For tape on Smith, click the links below:
HUDL VIDEO: CLICK HERE
FLORIDA GRIDIRON PREPS: CLICK HERE
“When I go into a game, my mind is clear,” when asked to describe his playing style. “I’m not thinking of anything but what my assignments are. I want to outwork everyone and outsmart everyone.”
When asked who he models his game after, he didn’t flinch. “Jonathan Cooper for the Arizona Cardinals; he used to play for North Carolina. And Chance Warmath who used to play for Alabama and now is on the Tennessee Titans.”
A 2015 Pre-Season All-Daytona pick on the offensive line by FNF (Friday Night Football) Magazine, Smith already boasts a 475 pound squat. Watching him drive defenders off the ball, strength is clearly an asset and should be something for him to build on when he joins the University of Idaho program this fall.
We’ll keep tabs on Smith this fall and provide updates as the Wolves season progresses.