Donta Smith set to sign with Cards

6'7 Donta Smith is off to a fast start this season and is averaging 30 points through the first three games. He had a huge game against West Plains yesterday and Southeastern Illinois Coach Todd Franklin provides the latest on Smith's game, the NBA possibility and more.

Donta Smith emerged last season as one of the top talents in junior college basketball after averaging 16 points and 7 rebounds. This season, Smith is the consesus preseason junior college Player of the Year.

According to Southeastern Illinois head coach Todd Franklin, this season, the talented Smith might be the best guard in college, at any level.

"He has a chance to be the best two guard in the country," Franklin said. "I've seen alot of guards and I wouldn't trade him for any of them."

And Smith is backing up his coaches words on the court so far.

In his first three games, Smith has scored 26, 28 and 34 points. Against a talented West Plains (Mo) team last night, Smith grabbed 9 boards and dished out 9 assists to go with his 34 points.

"He's still a work in progress," Franklin said. "But he has so much talent. We're still cleaning up some things in his game though."

Smith is playing mostly off guard, but spent considerable minutes against West Plains running the point.

"I haven't seen a better player in junior college," Franklin said.

Franklin has never had a player go through his program and not graduate and said Smith is doing well in school and has never missed a class.

With Smith's father living in LaGrange, KY the logistics might take a few days for Donta to sign and return his letter of intent to Louisville, but Franklin indicated he would likely get it completed this week. Smith's father must sign the letter to validate it.

And of course the NBA always comes up when talking about a 6'7, 222 shooting guard. Franklin said that some NBA teams have been calling recently and requesting schedules and stats. No NBA scouts have attended a Southeast game so far this season.

And unless Smith is a lock to be one's of the top ten guy's come next June's NBA draft, expect to see him terrorize U of L opponents next season.


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