COLUMBIA, S.C. — Huntington Prep (W.V.) listed Chris Smith as a guard Saturday night against AC Flora (S.C.), but the 6-foot-9 2018 prospect actually plays every spot on the court, and is just as comfortable handling the ball on the perimeter as he is banging bodies in the post.
Smith entered high school at just 6-feet tall, then had a pretty sizable growth spurt during the summer between his first and second year.
“I’ve been dribbling every since I started playing, and even since I’ve grown I’ve had to dribble a little bit,” Smith said about being comfortable handling the ball.
This is Smith’s first season at Huntington Prep, transferring from Fort Worth (TX) Country Day High School.
“It’s been fun for me. Coming here I get to play against big time competition every day,” Smith said about the adjustment. “I get to play alongside some of the top people in the country. I really love it. It helps me play well in the games.”
He scored 13 points Saturday on perfect 5-for-5 shooting from the floor. He also had five rebounds, two assists, a steal and a blocked shot.
“I think I did pretty well,” Smith said. “I focused on impacting the game in any way I could by just being active. I thought I did a good job of that tonight.”
Smith said his team really came together after take a close loss earlier in the weekend at the Bojangles Bash.
“It made us come together. After our first loss on the buzzer-beater, we had a team meeting,” he said. “We had to figure out what we did wrong and work on how to get better and play as a team. We have to play hard the whole time.”
His recruiting is picking up momentum since his move to Huntington Prep, and he’s recently added an offer from Providence.
The Jayhawks offered Smith a couple months ago, he said.
“I talk to coach (Jerrance) Howard all the time. I love that guy,” Smith said. “They believe I fit there. They think I fit and I really get along with the coaches. I love coach Howard and I love coach Self. They think I really fit.”
Smith thinks his game projects well at the next level.
“I can impact in every way — rebounding, passing, shooting, bring the ball up the court,” he said. “On defense I can guard every position. I think I can be really active, and can score from anywhere.”
What about defense?
“I take it personal,” he said.
Smith said he gets grief from his friends often because he spends so much time on basketball and academics.
“Hanging out with my family, since I don’t get much time with them. I like to talk with my sister, my brother and my parents,” he said about what he likes to do away from the basketball court. “I take school seriously and study a lot on the weekends. Everybody gets on me, but I don’t go out on the weekends. I like to study and do my homework and get it out of the way.”
He doesn’t have a favorite right now, but may trim his list soon. In addition to Kansas, he has offers from Baylor, Kansas State, Georgia Tech and Texas A&M.
“At the moment, I have no idea,” he said on his favorite. “Obviously Kansas is in top running since they’re such a good team. I haven’t really made a list yet, but I’ve been considering it.”