Banged up shoulder hasn't slowed Smith

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If there's one that thing cannot be confused about Tennessee commitments Brett Kendrick and Josh Smith, it's that they're winners.

Deep journeys into the Volunteer State postseason have been commonplace for the FOX Sports NEXT two-star recruits during their time under coach Rusty Bradley at Christian Academy of Knoxville.

CAK eliminated Loudon, Kingston, Alcoa and Elizabethton en route to the TSSAA Class 3A state championship against Milan.

In spite of getting constant double teams, Smith is playing his role to aid the high-scoring Warrior offense. He caught touchdowns passes spanning 44 and 10 yards in the semifinal victory.

"I've seen it all game every game this season," Smith said of the double coverage. "I just kind of get used to it. We're just going to have to come up with something. I want the ball in my hands but whatever is best for this team. All I want to play for is this team and then enjoy my senior year."

A broken shoulder earlier in his senior season threw the wideout for a loop, but he's back on the gridiron competing and rarely leaving the field.

"It's good," said Smith, who doesn't wear a brace, just more padding. "I'm just going to give my all for this team and then give my all for Tennessee after that. My health is good right now. My collarbone is good, yeah.

"It's a tough thing, but I'm going to get through it."

The Warriors' depth isn't what it was in 2011 when they took the 3A state crown. To make up for the void, Smith is logging time at safety, punter and returnman.

"Going both ways is like the hardest thing for me because I'm a receiver. Conditioning is the best thing for it, and I've got to do that because I'm going to be conditioned for this game and not cramp when the team needs me."

When his prep career is done, Smith knows he wants to play at Tennessee regardless of who the head coach is.

Smith remarked to IT after he got word that Dooley would not return: "I don't wanna look around, but if comes to it, then maybe I have to. But, I'm still committed. A commitment is a commitment. I will only break that commitment if The Lord brings me to that point, but I'm a Vol.

"(Jalen) Reeves-Maybin and I talk about it a lot. We are Vol no matter what. We will turn UT around in our recruitment class. I liked Dooley a lot, a lot! He was the one that recruited me, and I respect that to the max. I don't know what to think, I don't know enough. But, hopefully the next coach will honor the 2013 commitments. But, I'll just trust in God and see what happens."

The Knoxville native was on campus for every game at Neyland Stadium this fall and saw coordinator Jim Chaney's high-octane attack at its best with quarterback Tyler Bray lighting put the stats chart with top targets Justin Hunter and Cordarrelle Patterson.

"They don't play my position really; I play slot. But, they're fanatics and they're great. We've just got to win," Smith said.

Danny Parker is currently the Managing Editor, Recruiting Analyst and Staff Photographer for He was previously the sports editor at Shelbyville Times-Gazette. He joined the InsideTennessee team July 2011.

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