Standing 6’4″ and weighing over 240 lbs, Unique Smith has the body type that will certainly grab the attention of any FBS coach, and have them say, “Gee, that’s the type of athlete that I can coach up and make into a big-time defensive linemen in a few seasons.” To whichever coach echoes those sentiments, they are correct, and someone wise enough to realize that landing a commitment from Smith, is getting a player with immense upside. For now, it’s the beginning of the 2019 season, and Smith’s focus turns towards what is ahead, by changing a trend from the past.
“This season me and my team are looking to accomplish something that has not happened at Mt. Zion in over a decade, and that is to go to the state playoffs. We are just not only trying make to the playoffs, we are trying to be state champs also,” Smith said.
That will be no easy task for Smith and Mt. Zion playing a competitive Region 4 in 6-A that features consistent state powers like Stephenson, Tucker while Mundy’s Mill and Lovejoy look to be contending teams as well. From an individual stand point, Smith has a strong list he sets out to accomplish to help push his team to the success mentioned above.
“My goals are to consistently dominated every game game; give over 100%, play my hardest, make an All-State first team, and have double-digit sack/tackle for loss season.”
Smith showed a ton of promise in his junior film, his shear size and ability to play with leverage gets him into plays wreaking havoc. The senior shows good flexibility, keeps a pretty flat back while engaged and does a very nice job of moving his feet with the play. Going into his senior year, Smith thinks he has continued to improve his craft by focusing exclusively on football.
“I improved in my overall strength and my confidence in my moves. Since I didn’t play basketball my junior year, I used that time I was going to be playing basketball in the weight room lifting. I definitely got stronger from last year – I can see changes in my body.” Smith continued, “My max had really improved because of the extra time and grind in the lab – that’s my nickname for the weight room. My bench and power clean are over 250 lbs., and my squat and deadlift are over 400 lbs too.”
Smith is a big versatile athlete, who shows potential even at the college level to play multiple positions on the defensive line. When asked about a player he models his game after, there was a number of players that came to the jumbo-athlete’s mind.
“I model my game after a mixture of players – Khalil Mack, Jadeveon Clowney, and DeMarcus Lawrence. I feel like my game matches DeMarcus Lawrence the most because his biggest strength is his technique and his multiple pass-rush moves and I feel like I am a technically sound defensive end like him with good size, speed, and strength. With Khalil Mack his power and Jadeveon Clowney his speed to the football.”
A unique range of colleges have taken an interest to Smith, spanning from programs at nearly at every level you could suspect. Like many still in the class of 2020, his recruitment is not an extremely clear picture at this point, but Smith doesn’t really sweat it either.
“I have some Power 5, FBS, FCS and few Division 2 schools that looks at me, text me on Twitter and email me. To be honest, I don’t really worry about it. I focus on school more than the recruiting process, because I’m student first then athlete next and also I’m a honor roll student who has over a 3.5 GPA.”
Smith seems to understand that film is king, and that is the main thing he can control at this point. “Basically, I know if I dominate and play great, more offers will be rolling in,” he said.
Right now, Smith doesn’t have any visits yet planned, but will let us know when they are set in stone later this fall, so stay tuned to @RecruitGeorgia on Twitter to hear the latest on Smith and other athletes around the state.