Northwestern is not the first school that Smith has visited. He camped at Iowa State and Wisconsin earlier this year, and his AAU coach -- former NBA player Chris Carr -- confirmed that a host of schools have shown interest, including Oregon State, Miami (Ohio), Purdue, Minnesota and others.While Smith is listed by Scout as only a one-star prospect, Carr told Purple Reign last month that the 2011 guard has one of the best strokes he's ever seen for a high schooler.
As Carr put it to PR: "Whoever gets him is going to get one of the premier shooters in the whole country."And the stats back up that sentiment.
Smith, a 6-foot-1 junior-to-be, parlayed that stroke into some staggering numbers. The Orono High School product averaged 16.5 points as a freshman, netting double figures in all but six of his 26 games. And last season as a sophomore, Smith upped his scoring output to about 24 per contest. He notched a 49-point performance to go along with three games of at least 30.So, yeah, he can shoot.
Purple Reign's full story on Smith, published in July, can be found here. A few highlights from the article...
"He's always had an amazing ability to shoot the basketball. That's always been his saving grace, so to speak," Carr said.
"But his defense has been phenomenal. He's played against some incredible players, and his maturity and his approach have really come a long way from a few a years ago."
..."Academics is really big for me," Smith said. "So I'm trying to go to a school that's known for their academics, and Northwestern obviously is. And they have a nice, big campus which you would be fun as well....
"A couple of my friends from my neighborhood actually went to Northwestern and they loved their experience there. And as far as education, I'm tying to think about life after basketball."
To contact David Vranicar, publisher of Purple Reign, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org.