Woodie Absorbs Smith's Full Attention

Woodie Absorbs Smith's Full Attention

Raymond Woodie, the linebackers coach at the University of South Florida, has garnered the attention of a three-star defender who plays his prep football in the Yellowhammer State.

Thus far, 17 Division I programs have dished out scholarship offers to three-star Florence (Ala.) standout, Darius Smith, a hybrid prospect who's being courted to play both safety and outside linebacker at 6-foot-2, 195-pounds.

"I have offers from Tennessee, Kentucky, Louisville, Miami, South Florida, NC State, Washington State, UAB, Arkansas State, Southern Mississippi, Auburn, Middle Tennessee and those are the ones I can remember," Smith said.

Smith credits his versatility and ability to play a variety of different roles at the college level for the near two dozen collegiate opportunities he currently has on the table.

"My strength is my athleticism and I can just move around anywhere on the field," Smith said. "Most schools are recruiting me as a safety, but a couple are recruiting me for outside linebacker, like a nickel. I had three interceptions, 103 tackles and 15 tackles for loss (in 2013)."

South Florida and Miami have spent a significant amount of time trying to reel in talent from the Yellowhammer State in recent years, most recently the Bulls, who managed to sign Nick Holman in February to bolster their linebacking core in Tampa Bay.

"I actually speak with those two schools a lot, but South Florida keeps more in touch than Miami does," Smith said. "I don't have any dates set up (to visit those schools), but it will be an official visit when I go."

Smith has been steadily building a tight-knit relationship with linebackers coach Raymond Woodie of South Florida, who's known for his successful recruiting pitches.

"Coach Woodie is my recruiting coach," Smith said. "He's a cool coach and I liked how he approached me with everything and the way he introduced me to the program.

"I got to take a visit down there to see how everything is on their campus."

The three-star prospect plans on making his commitment by the third game of his senior campaign. Smith also has no leaders and says Kentucky and Louisville are showing the most interest early on.

USFNation.com Recommended Stories