Smith picking up interest

Published 10:17 pm Thursday, July 6, 2017

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy all-purpose player Erek Smith is catching the eyes of NCAA Division I coaches.

NSA is in its offseason program before football camp opens in a couple of weeks. In the meantime, players like Smith, an all-state performer, have been attending college camps and have caught the attention of a lot of coaches.

Smith has attracted high interest from schools such as William & Mary, Norfolk State University, Wingate and Campbell University. All of the schools have expressed, both to Smith himself and to his coach, Mike Biehl, that they like Smith.

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“He’s camped in front of them and has ran 4.5 40-yard dashes,” Biehl said. “They really like him. It’s only a matter of time before he brings in some offers.”

Smith has been enjoying being able to showcase his skill set but is also learning the details of the recruiting process. At the camps, he tests with drills like the broad jump and 40-yard dash. From there, he and others go onto the field to do one-on-one individual drills. The NSA senior has felt that he has performed well against good competition. Coaches are targeting him as a defensive back.

“Having the chance to meet with different coaches and learn about different programs has been fun,” Smith said. “Also, competing against that different competition helps prepare me for the season.”

What Smith has enjoyed the most about the camps is being able to get a feel for how different coaches coach. At the college level, things are done differently, and getting to learn about that process and how things go has helped Smith.

Though an official offer hasn’t come through yet for the NSA senior, he believes something will soon. He prefers to go to a school with a good football program that’s also known for good academics.

Smith has been a defensive back and wide receiver for the Saints. He has made the all-conference and all-state teams in both his sophomore and junior seasons and was a big part of the 2015 state championship team. As his senior year approaches, he is hoping to do the same this year.

Last season, Smith was a team captain, so he won’t have a problem trying to lead his teammates in his senior year.

“I’m feeling good about this year. I think we can do some good things,” Smith said. “We have a good group of seniors. I’ve just been getting ready, so I can do whatever I can for my team.”