JUCO running back high on Louisville

Junior-college running back Jeremy Smith of Fresno, Calif., City College made an unofficial visit to the University of Louisville on Friday. Smith's father, Craig Williams, breaks down the visit for Cardinal Authority. Smith will be at Alabama on Saturday.

It's been a whirlwind for Fresno, Calif., City College running back Jeremy Smith.

In the past few weeks, Smith has seen his stock with colleges skyrocket. He's a standout originally from Louisiana who is set to enroll in January and participate in the Spring.

But where he will attend is a tough decision.

"Everything has happened so fast," Smith father, Craig Williams said. "It's been the last couple of weeks and a lot of calls. I'm not sure how Louisville found out about him, but they got his tape, they saw it and they loved it."

The 6-foot-1, 220-pound Smith, who has a 3.0 grade-point average and is eligible to play at the next level, has offers from U of L, Vanderbilt, Southern Mississippi and Notre Dame and will make an unofficial visit on Saturday to Alabama.

But before heading to check out the Crimson Tide, Smith and his family spent Friday in Louisville with the Cardinals' staff.

"It was a great visit," Williams said. "Those guys went far and above what we expected for the visit. It was great and the biggest thing for me and my wife, the graduation rate. The recent numbers show everybody graduates and that's a big thing for us.

"I think that goes a long way."

Williams said Smith was "impressed" with Bobby Petrino and noted the family has long been college football fans and knew of the coaches' history with offense.

"Jeremy likes to run down hill and that's perfect in Petrino's offense," Williams said. "He knew all about coach Petrino's offense and it's a great fit.

"But we're not rushing to any decisions. We want to take out time. We know we have a small window and it's closing but we want to make the right decision. I'm going to see if I can help my son make the very best decision for him."

In high school, Smith attended Hammond, La., Magnet School before heading to Fresno City for one season. As a junior, Smith had one of the best games of the season nationally with 31 carries for 447 yards and seven touchdowns against Pearl River High.

As a senior, Smith was named a first-team all-district defensive end, linebacker, running back and kick returner. He carried 59 times for 418 yards and six TDs last season on offense. But his only offer was from Southeastern Louisiana and he went to JUCO.

This past season Smith finished with 205 carries for 1,735 yards and 17 touchdowns in 11 games for Fresno City.


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