Hawkeyes Latest to Offer Smith

Overland Park, Kansas (St. Thomas Aquinas) linebacker Brian Smith is quickly emerging as one of the top linebacker prospects across the entire Midwest. This past Saturday, Smith attended a one day football camp at the University of Iowa, and this afternoon, he received his tenth scholarship offer.

"After the camp, Coach (Eric) Johnson told me to give him a call on Monday after their staff had a meeting," Smith said. "When I called him, he said the staff had got caught up and needed to watch the film one more time, but were very close to offering. Then, he sent me a text message today telling me to call him. I did, and he told me that they were offering me a scholarship, and it was now their priority to make me a Hawkeye."

The Hawkeyes offered Smith as a linebacker, but informed him they were not sure whether they would recruit him on the outside or as an inside backer.

Iowa is a school that entered the picture later than others with Smith, but it appears they have made a strong impression.

"Iowa called me during May, and told me they needed to see me in person, but when they came by the school, I couldn't get out of class," said Smith, whose father, Chris, played fullback for Notre Dame and the Kansas City Chiefs.

"Due to that, they asked for me to come to camp. I had always had Iowa in the back of my mind, and I was really impressed with everything I saw there."

"When I first got there, I clicked on one of their kiosks that showed highlights of each of their positions, and I chose linebackers. Instantly, I saw Abdul (Hodge) and Chad (Greenway) making big hit after big hit. Then, I saw the defensive backs watch Iowa's defensive backs, and they were always making big hits. I could tell it was the type of defense I want to play in where you run to the ball, hit em' in the mouth, knock their helmet off, and be glad of it."

"AT camp, they primarily had us do coverage drills where we dropped back into pass zones. They really wanted to see how well we turned our hips, ran to the ball, and adjusted to the ball. Coach (Darrell) Wilson actually mimicked the song "lean back" when he was telling us that if a receiver is going to lean into you, you have to lean into them, as well, so they don't get the inside. He kept making sure that I kept my eyes out of the backfield until I saw the receiver's hands go up or their eyes get big," Smith stated.

Smith had previously received scholarship offers from Arizona State, Kansas, Kansas State, Kentucky, Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska, Texas Tech, and Washington.

He attended Notre Dame's camp back on June 3rd, but stated that it didn't appear the Fighting Irish (his father's alma mater) were going to offer anytime soon.

Yesterday, he attended the Michigan Wolverine's camp, and walked away in hopes of earning his next offer.

"Michigan was everything I expected. I, mean, I love the Big Ten, and they had the biggest stadium I had ever seen in person. You could tell it is a big-time football school with great facilities and great tradition," Smith said.

"Texas Tech actually offered me as a defensive end, but Michigan told me that is where they will recruit me to play, too. They had me workout at linebacker in the first session, and defensive end the second session. I did better at defensive end than I thought I would do with it being my first time going through one on one drills. I beat my man a number of times. The Michigan coaches told me they felt I could grow to 6'4 and put on another 20 or so pounds."

"I'm open to playing defensive end. It's just like my father told me, you do what you have to do to be the best. Besides, my favorite player has always been Julius Peppers."

Smith stated he is currently wide open, but that his current favorites included Iowa, Kansas, Kansas State, Michigan, Michigan State, Missouri, and Nebraska.

He will visit Nebraska this Friday, and Kansas State next week.

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