Unofficials all over for Georgia linebacker

There will be little choice for linebacker, Toryan Smith. He'll have to follow in the footsteps of one of last year's best. Tray Blackmon literally became a household name with his frenzied style of play and the fact that his switch was only firmly towards the "on" position. Smith plays middle, so he's a little more reserved, but as Toryan himself says, his switch has only one position as well.

He's seen him on film. He's read about him in the papers. And, he's all too familiar with the name from radio, tv and the internet. Tray Blackmon, the linebacker extrordinaire, one of the top prospects in the country, but most definitely in the state of Georgia.

Rome high school's Toryan Smith acknowledges what Blackmon did last year, but said it's a new year, it's a new time for someone else to shine.

He intends for it to be him.

"I believe that it's important to stay humble, but I know what I can do out there," Toryan said. "I remember how Tray played and the way I play has to be a little different. He's the guy they just say "go" to and he's blitzing like crazy, but in the middle, I'm like the quarterback of the defense."

"I have to be aggressive, but I have to make sure of what I am doing, what's going on with the play and where everyone is at."

It would be hard to argue with the success that Smith had doing that last year, Toryan lighting up opponents for eight sacks, 112 total tackles, including 19 total for loss. Add three interceptions to that and you have a 6 foot, 240 linebacker that does it all.

"You have to be," Smith said of being versatile in getting up-field, but also playing in coverage if needed. "I have my job, but you have to make plays that aren't always going to be around you. You go out there and make something happen. That's what makes great players."

Smith has already gotten plenty of confirmation as to his status as one of the better linebacker prospects in the country. Offers from schools like Oklahoma, Nebraska, Florida, Georgia, Auburn, Alabama, LSU, Maryland and Notre Dame are just a few of those that have set a busy off-season in motion for Smith. In fact, to look at it, you'd think that he's trying to visit every single school that has offered him in writing.

"That would be nice if I could," he said. "I know I am going up to see Oklahoma and Nebraska this week and probably Florida that following weekend and I might be able to squeeze in Notre Dame. It's important that I take the time to look at what these schools are like, but more importantly, get to know the coaches that could be my position coach or that will be recruiting me this year."

Ok, that's nice, but there's this school about two and a half hours west that at least for fans, seems like the only place that resides in Smith's football future. "Yeah, I know that most people in the state are expecting me to go to Georgia," Toryan said. "I grew up loving them, my dad played there, so I can see why they think that."

"The thing is, my dad isn't pressuring me at all to go there and I'd say being able to take all these visits right now proves how he wants me to keep all my options open and pick the best place for me."

Toryan has stated an early list of favorites, that list being: Auburn, Alabama, Georgia, Oklahoma and Florida. Smith said of that list, that much like anything else, it's prone to change and perhaps dramatically. What he knows now about those schools and others could be entirely different from what he will know about them in the months to come.

"I could say that such and such team is my leader right now, but if I don't make my decision until February, that's probably not going to mean a whole lot," he said. "There's a lot of time to go, a lot of schools to see, so who knows what my list is going to look like in a month or heck, a week."

"I don't know, but it's going to be fun to see all these places during the whole process."

The other fun part, actually the most fun Smith plans on having this year won't have a thing to do with recruiting. It will have everything to do with how he plans on going out as a prep-football player and he's got one solitary goal in mind.

"It's about going out a champion," Toryan said. "There's a lot of great football players out there, but those that are really the greatest are those that can take their team and help to elevate them to a title."

"That's my job this year. It's my job to be the quarterback of the defense and make plays, to mainly to make everyone around me better and help my team to win."

"If you do that, then you can say you've done something."

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