When you're talking about the class of 2007 in Ohio, one of the first names out of your mouth is Chris Smith. That is no exception in the case of Ohio State.
The Buckeyes have been keeping tabs on the 6-3 junior signal-caller from South Point who threw for 1,400 yards this season and 1,300 as a sophomore.
"We did better this season than last year, we improved a lot," Smith said. "We should be even better next year as we lose only three seniors."
Smith has already been offered a scholarship by West Virginia, and this past weekend, he was in Columbus to check out the Buckeyes. Although Ohio State has not yet offered a scholarship, they have shown plenty of interest.
"I really like Ohio State a lot," Smith said, "also Michigan, Illinois, WVU, and there's just so many I'm looking at. I've got to narrow it down."
Blessed with good size and a good arm, Smith's talent is unquestioned. The mental aspect of the game is coming to him more and more every day.
It's also something he has made a huge priority.
"I've got to work on who to throw to and reading defenses," he admitted. "I'm getting better but it's a long process and I've just got to keep working at it to play at the next level."
The visit last weekend to Ohio State for the Illinois game was the first one of the season to watch the Buckeyes play. Smith says he has visited Ohio State, Michigan, Marshall and West Virginia. The Mountaineers and Ohio University are the only ones that have offered thus far.
The fact that the Mountaineers offered Smith so early will play at least some role in his decision-making, although it won't be the biggest factor.
"I do like the fact they offered so early, it means a lot to me and it will go into consideration," he explained. "They offered me on September 1, which is the first day they could have. That means a lot."
The visit to Ohio State certainly didn't hurt the Buckeyes' chances to beat out the Mountaineers in the future, however.
He came away at the very least impressed with what he saw in Columbus.
"The size and the stadium was beautiful," Smith said of his impressions of the visit. "Being up there around all those people, I think there was 105,000 people in attendance…it was amazing."
If there have been any problems in the past with the Ohio State offense in terms of what recruits think of their throwing the ball, the recent explosion in points may have helped rectify that perception.
Smith says he fits well into Ohio State's offensive scheme from what he has seen.
"I think I fit in well at Ohio State. It's a pro-style offense," he explained. "It's not too much pass, not too much run so it really evens out. Good balance."
That will be important to Smith, who describes himself as a pocket passer that is able to get out and run when needed.
For now, Smith said he's relaxed and just enjoying the process. He won't be in any hurry to make a decision and will likely visit a few camps next summer before beginning his visits again around this time next year as a senior.
Smith says he would like to major in History and then go to Med School or become an Exercise Physiologist. He reports a 3.2 GPA so far as a junior.
But it's all about patience, for now.
"I'm just trying to take it all in and see all the games I can right now," he concluded. "I've got plenty of time to think about it."