Rivals.com - ACC and SEC offers for elite 2023 DL James Smith
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ACC and SEC offers for elite 2023 DL James Smith

MONTGOMERY, Ala.James Smith will be one of the top defensive line recruits in the 2023 class. The 6-foot-4, 255 pound sophomore at Carver High is nimble on his feet, very athletic and an explosive athlete.

Yes, he is only a sophomore, but his offer list does not reflect his talent just yet.

Florida State and Georgia are the most recent schools to offer Smith, and that Bulldog offer is one he wanted.

"I don't know too much about Florida State yet, but I have had my eye on Georgia, and it is a great school with great players," said Smith. "I talked to coach Glenn Schumann Friday and he offered me. I cannot wait to get over there for a visit. I have heard a lot of good things about Georgia."

Smith saw Georgia play in 2019. He was visiting Auburn, a school that offered after his freshman year, and the Tigers are an in-state school on his radar.

"It was so cold, but it was loud, it was exciting, and I got chills at that Auburn vs. Georgia game. It was my first time at Auburn and I had a great time. I loved the crowd and they had me into the game. It is a place I want to get back to.

North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee are the other three schools that have offered Smith giving him a total of five. Expect that number to double, triple and continue to grow as more schools see him in action.

He said he hears from South Carolina coaches the most, but is still in the process of learning about the Tar Heels, Gamecocks and Volunteers.

Smith knows he is a marked man now with the big offers around his name, and he is ready to show why he has those.

"The offers are motivation for me," said Smith. "People are starting to know my name, they are starting to know my face, so I have to go out there and show why I have the offers.

"Players are going to head-hunt me, coaches are going to game-plan against me, and people are coming at me, so I am going to keep working and show why the offers are there."

Alabama was Smith's school growing up. He knows the Crimson Tide is interested, but Nick Saban has not offered yet. It is an offer he wants, and when/if he gets it, he will keep an open mind.

"I grew up a big Alabama fan, but it is more about business now. I will have to think about schools a lot more now.. I can't just be a fan anymore.

"I am wide open to everyone now. I am interested in all the schools that offered me and it is just the beginning for me. There is a lot out there I need to see."

Like most recruits, Smith cannot wait to get back out on visits to learn more about the schools that are recruiting him.

"I want to have that good feeling when I am on a campus, so visits will be important to me," said Smith. "I want to feel like I am home. I want to feel welcome. I won't know how I feel about a school until I am able to take visits."