Smith Reflects on Debut

Linebacker Will Smith reflects on his first Division I football game after transferring to Tech from Riverside Community College.

It was something he never got to experience before Saturday night.

Running out of the tunnel as a member of a Division I football team was a first for linebacker Will Smith, and something he will never forget.

"Yeah, coming out running through the mist was exciting," he said.  "That was something I never experienced before, so I really enjoyed that."

Smith came to Texas Tech after spending last season at Riverside Community College and finished second on the team wit 36 solo tackles and 13 tackles for loss as well.

The Riverside, California native, was highly recruited by other teams including Nevada and New Mexico, but chose to bring his talents to West Texas and has made his mark already on the Red Raider program.

A lot of the talk through the spring practices and fall camp surrounded Smith as he was moved to the MLB position to help run the defense, and that was only after a few practices.

With all the hype that surrounded the junior college transfer, Smith said he was happy to get the first game in the books.

"It felt good to get the first one out of the way, get the first game jitters out of the way," he said. "After that, it's just slowing down and making sure you just take it all in at once and just make the plays."

Smith was able to get himself in on some plays as the Tech defense dominated the Demons holding them to just 84 yards of total offense and 13 rushing yards, which marked the fewest yards on the ground since 1998.

"Yeah, my Division 1 debut, it was pretty fun," Smith said. "I had a really good time.  You just take it all in at once and understand it's there.  Now it's time to focus up and go through the season."

Smith played a role in the Red Raiders victory on Saturday, collecting three solo tackles and also turned in the only quarterback hurry for the Tech defense.

After his first Division I college football game, Smith said he expected the game itself to move faster but felt like he handled it well, and knows there is always room for improvement as the season moves on.

"For myself, I always feel like I need to do a lot of things better," he said.  "So after looking at the film, a couple of mistakes I made were just slowing down a little bit and just the way to handle blocks better, but that's about it though."

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