SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Calvary Day is loaded with future college football players, including at the tight end position.
Michael Smith is listed as a four-star prospect on 247Sports and a Top 10-ranked tight end nationally in the Class of 2024. He has offers from a bevy of Division I universities, including Michigan, Tennessee and Miami.
Those offers are warranted by Smith’s performance on the field: he caught 42 passes for 684 yards and nine touchdowns for the Cavaliers last season.
When we caught up, Smith was about to visit University of Kentucky.
This transcription has been edited for grammar and syntax.
Q: I know the summer is still young, but what have you been working on for the last month or two?
A: Last month or two has just been making sure I’m in touch with everything school-wise, like plays were going to run this season. It can get chaotic if you miss a day so just making sure I’m caught up.
Q: You told me you’re going on a visit to Kentucky. Is that an unofficial or for a camp?
A: We’re just going there to watch them practice and work out and get the experience of how they work.
Q: Have you done that with any of the other schools that offered you yet?
A: I’ve done that with UCF, but that’s the only one.
Q: With UCF, you’ve got Troy Ford Jr, your teammate, going there. I know they offered your other teammate Terry Simmons and a lot of other South Georgia guys. What has your interaction with them been like?
A: UCF, the energy is through the roof. Everyone is excited, if you got offered, the whole staff knows about you. The whole energy was absolutely through the roof.
Q: Are there any other schools that stand out to you? Not even in the respect that you’re ready to go there, but any others pop in your mind?
A: University of Miami because my cousin is a huge fan of Miami. When I got that offer, he was like ‘oh yeah, we need to commit there ASAP.’ That was the school that was always talked about in the family is Miami.
Q: You’ve got a lot of great schools to narrow down. What are you looking for on a visit? What’s important to you?
A: With me playing tight end, making sure that the personnel fits my style of play and that a tight end is in there the majority of the time. How the coaches coach and basically what the energy is like. I don’t want to go to a school where the tight end barely goes in the game.
Q: In the highlights I’ve seen of you, you’ve been mostly split out wide. Is that where you played for most of the year or did you do some in-line stuff too?
A: It was more a mix. I got more film split out wide but I would say my main position is tight end because I like hitting people. Splitting out wide is an executive decision, it’s more of a personnel thing that goes on.
Q: So at the next level, you’d want to be more in-line?
A: Yeah, definitely.
Q: What advice to these college coaches offer you about what to get better in and what to expect next? What are some of the common themes?
A: With almost every coach, one of the more common themes is to never be satisfied. You can always improve something. You can improve your blocking and your footwork when it comes to blocking, you can improve route-running. They’re giving me advice on what to improve and some of them want to see if I’m coachable.
Q: You’ve got quite a few teammates that have already committed to a college or will over the next year or two. Will there decisions play any role in yours or are you making yours independently?
A: I’m making mine more independently, but I think the recruiting process goes off of theirs. With UCF, it’s like “we’ve got Troy, so why not get Mike?” I think that’s how that process is going. I think Troy is also another recruiter on that side. He wants me to come with him.
Q: You’re a good ways off from a decision day, but do you have a timeframe in mind to do a final list of teams?
A: I was thinking a top schools list around playoffs or the end of my junior football season. I can’t really say much more after that. But top schools are in my mind.
Q: You guys had a great run last year, probably didn’t get quite as far in the playoffs as you hoped. With all the starters coming back, what is the thing that can propel you further this year?
A: I’d say relationships with players and coaches. Everybody was kind of doing their own thing and it got to the Elite Eight last year. But if communication with players and coaches was improved, we could have made state. If I communicate well with the left tackle and the right tackle and the receivers, everybody can feed off each others’ energy and we wouldn’t lose much if someone came out of the game.
Q: What’s the vibe at your offseason workouts been like?
A: We’ve got our own playlist and we’re all boosting each other up. No matter what, you’re going to get some energy behind you. You could be squatting 225 for the first time, the whole weight room would be behind you and screaming at you. You’re going to have some energy.
Q: Finally, I know you have former Savannah State coach Russell DeMasi over there. Have you worked with him yet? And if so, what are your impressions?
A: He’s a really good coach. He’s young so he’s really cool with the things we say. He’s just fun to be around and always up for a challenge.
MIKE’S HUDL: https://www.hudl.com/profile/13715575/Michael-Smith
MIKE’S TWITTER: https://twitter.com/ayeemikee1_
MIKE’S INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/ayeemikee_/?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=