Smith ready to break out for Pierce

We've already documented how loaded L.A. Pierce is in the secondary, but up front they also have a few studs and one to keep an eye on this fall is DT Tysheem Smith (6-2, 293). The talented defensive line prospect played both positions -- nose tackle and defensive tackle -- for the Brahmas last season and he said he expects more of the same this fall...

Smith prepped in New Jersey and headed west when he was unable to qualify for a D-1 scholarship.

"I already knew a couple of guys out here and some of our coaches are from there, so I already had some connections here at Pierce," Smith told

As a freshman last year, Smith played both nose tackle and defensive tackle and managed to post 15 tackles in five games while working in the defensive line rotation.

"We already had some good sophomores here, so I just worked in the rotation, but this year I'm planning to start," Smith said. "I expect to start, but I am working on a lot of things -- my explosiveness, my core, my first step -- and making sure I do everything I can to be ready when I'm called on."

On the recruiting front, Smith has heard from a few schools and plans to visit one in the summer.

"Miami, UNLV and South Florida have all been in contact with me," Smith said. "I'm planning to take an unofficial visit to Miami in the summer, probably sometime in June, after I head back home for the offseason.

"I'm open to anyone that wants to recruit me, but yeah, I'd like to get back home or at least close if I could. It will just be a decision that I have to figure out. It will have to be the right situation for me and the right opportunity. That's what I'm looking for."

Smith is on pace to graduate in December and he will have three years to play two wherever he ends up.

Tysheem Smith Scout Profile

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