Eight Big Offers for Georgia Cornerback

Notre Dame has had success recruiting the state of Georgia in the past and Brian Kelly would like to keep that momentum going with the 2012 recruiting class. Four-star cornerback Geno Smith from Saint Pius X Catholic High School (Atlanta, Ga.) doesn't know much about Notre Dame at this point, but he's interested in learning more.

At 6-foot-0, 170-pounds, Geno Smith has the size that the Notre Dame staff would like to bring to South Bend. Smith has been doesn't have a scholarship offer from the Irish yet, but it may come soon.

"I've been hearing from Notre Dame since the beginning of September," Smith said. "They've been sending me recruiting material, and my coach has talked to them. They've invited me to all of their home games, but I just haven't been able to get up there.

"I really don't know much about Notre Dame, but I'm anxious to learn more about them."

Smith already has scholarship offers from Auburn, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, Louisville, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, and Florida. He's also receiving mail from the likes of LSU, Alabama, Notre Dame, UCLA, A&M, Miami, and Clemson.

A dynamic playmaker, Smith plays running back and cornerback at Saint Pius X. Although it's tough to find running backs to give up the ball, Geno actually favors playing on the defensive side of the ball at the next level.

"I see cornerback as my future in college," he said. "I like playing defense. I like making plays and I like to hit. I like to take the ball instead of being given the ball. At defensive back you have to get the ball and I like that challenge.

"I think you have to have a lot of confidence playing cornerback. You can't really second guess your decision. You have to be confident and prepared."

Smith always knew he was a good player, but he's a humble kid. It wasn't until he went out and competed against some of the top players in the area this past summer that he really realized how good he was.

"I'm still definitely in shock by all of this (recruiting attention)," he explained. "I went to the National Underclassmen Combine my sophomore year and I won the MVP for defensive backs. Auburn offered me first, a couple weeks after the NUC combine in Atlanta. I feel like that combine really put me on the map.

"I went down to Georgia camp twice over the summer. I did pretty well and then the invited me back down for ‘Dawg Night'. I felt like I earned that offer more than any of the others, because after the second camp, that's when they offered me.

"I was going up against some of their commitments, Christian Conley, Zach Witchitt, and Justin Scott-Wesley," Smith said. "I was defending them pretty well. So I think I earned the offer then, and that's when I realized that I could play at the next level."

Although Smith has spent time on the Georgia campus, he is going to keep an open mind when is comes to the recruiting process.

"I actually grew up a Miami fan, because my grandparents live in Ft Lauderdale," Smith said. "I'd go visit them during the summer, so I actually grew up a Miami fan. Lately, before the recruiting process, I was a Georgia fan too.

"I'm definitely not going to just focus on the SEC. The SEC is a great conference, but I'm going to take my time and give everyone an opportunity because they're giving me an opportunity."

Smith has 35 tackles, seven interceptions and 11 pass break-ups on the season.

IrishIllustrated.com Top Stories