Cards offer DT named Marcus Smith

The new coaching staff at the University of Louisville is scouring the nation for a couple of defensive tackles. The Cardinals have dipped into the junior-college ranks and offered Highland, Kan., Community College standout Marcus Smith a scholarship. He is trying to plan a visit to U of L despite being committed to Texas Tech.

Highland, Kan., Community College defensive tackle Marcus Smith remembers early in the college football season doing a Google search on his name to see what was said about his game.

But what he found wasn't a lot of information about him, rather another Marcus Smith.

"I actually knew Louisville had a Marcus Smith because when I googled my name, his popped up," the JUCO Smith said. "I kind of watched Louisville from that point on to see what he was doing. It was cool, another Marcus Smith.

"I always thought in the back of my mind, 'What if Louisville offered me?'"

The 6-foot-3, 305-pound Smith hadn't heard from the Cardinals until the new staff came on board. Now, he had talked with U of L coach Bobby Petrino several times and has an offer from the Cardinals. Smith, who is currently committed to Texas Tech, said he's "trying to set up a visit," to U of L for later this month.

"They are in the mix for sure," Smith said. "I've talked to coach (Chris Klenakis), coach (L.D.) Scott and coach Petrino.

"When he was at Western Kentucky, coach Petrino was recruiting me and I went on a visit. I liked it and really liked him but decided to commit to Texas Tech. I thought I was going to be able to get in there in December but I found out late that I couldn't, so now I am going to a junior college near home and it's opened up a little bit. I'm not sure what I'll do."

Smith said he was watching ESPN when he saw that Petrino had accepted the U of L job across the screen and it "made me smile."

"He called me up and said he liked me and wanted to offer me a scholarship," Smith said. "So, it was pretty cool."

Smith said he finds it interesting that he would be on the same line that was occupied by U of L's Marcus Smith, who finished his eligibility last month after recording 14.5 sacks during his stellar senior season.

"I followed them because of him," the JUCO Smith said, noting he had 50 tackles, 4.5 sacks and six tackles for a loss at Highland.

Smith played two years at Highland. He would have two years of eligibility left.

He also had offers from Charlotte, Memphis, Middle Tennessee State, New Mexico State, North Texas, Temple, Texas State, UAB and UTEP.


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