Two Schools Join The Battle For Smith

The recruitment of Jerry Smith is heating up and a few new schools have joined the mix. The combo guard hit the road and took two unofficial visits this past weekend and is headed to an ACC school this weekend. Jerry Smith Sr. caught up with Evan Daniels of DeaconSports.com and updated him on the latest.

Usually when you sit down to think about your official visits, you don't add two schools to your list, but that's the case with Jerry Smith Jr.

The 6-foot-3 guard, who averaged nearly a triple-double this past season (19.8 points, 7 boards, and 9 assists), has seen his recruitment really heat up as of late. Wake Forest and Wisconsin have been involved for a long time, but there are two new schools beginning to get in the mix.

This past weekend Smith took unofficial visits to Louisville and Tennessee. Both schools are relatively new to his list and they join Wake Forest, Wisconsin, and Connecticut to round out his top five.

"We came in and talked to Coach Taylor (of Louisville) on Friday," Smith Sr. said. "We did a little bit of visiting, but we weren't on campus a lot because we had to get down to Tennessee."

Although Smith and his father weren't in Louisville long, the Cardinal coaching staff left a lasting impression.

"I just enjoyed the visit, I enjoyed the tradition, and I enjoyed the things they had to say about the recruitment and their academics standards," the elder Smith stated. "I like that eight million dollar facility that Coach Pitino has built, that will take care of the athletes."

The Smith family already has a few ties to the city of Louisville, as they have family that lives in Louisville.

Tennessee is another school that has entered the picture, and the main reason is the hiring of new head coach Bruce Pearl. Pearl has a son on Jerry Smith Sr.'s AAU team and the two are good friends. Does the friendship make Tennessee a real player in Jerry Smith Jr.'s recruitment?

"We are giving it some strong consideration," Smith Sr. indicated. "We are really going to continue to weigh things out. Coach Pearl is a good friend of mine and there are some positives that can come with that. He's a friend and I trust him, so those are very important factors."

After visiting Louisville and Tennessee, Jerry Smith Jr. is going to use his first official visit and take a trip to Wake Forest this coming weekend. The Demon Deacons already have Mike Conley and Greg Oden coming for their officials so this will be a big weekend for Skip Prosser and company. And according to Smith Sr., that was planned.

"Right, they are all supposed to get in together, they wanted all three of those guys in this weekend."

Smith Sr. his son plans on taking his other official visits but they haven't decided when they will be. He did indicate that they hope to decide on a school before the beginning of the summer.


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