Oneonta, Ala. wide receiver Nolen Smith caught 102 passes for over 1,500 yards and 23 touchdowns as a junior. It was a huge year for the 6-foot-3, 190-pound prospect and now it has paid off with an SEC offer.
"It was Vanderbilt," Smith said. "They called my coach today and he came and got me out of class and I called them back and they offered me a scholarship and I was very excited. I had talked to them but I wasn't expecting to get one."
The first offer always feels good and Smith's reaction was to be expected.
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"It feels good to get that one out of the way," he said. "It takes the pressure off. We played against a guy that went up there a few years ago, Chris Nickson, and it seems like a great school and I'd like to go up there."
Though Smith has an interest in Vanderbilt, there is no denying that he also has an interest in the in-state Crimson Tide. Last weekend he attended a junior day at Alabama.
"It was good," he said. "I had been to a few of their games this past year and I was really impressed with it and their academics. I'd be really interested in them if they offered."
Smith also has a visit for this weekend scheduled for Knoxville to go to Tennessee's junior day.
"I haven't talked to their new staff," he said of the Vols. "Lance Thompson, I tried to get in touch with him and he didn't answer the couple of times I called."
Smith's recruiting interest comes off of the heels of his monster junior season, a season in which he surpassed even his own expectations.
"It went really well," he said. "I wasn't expecting to have as many catches and yards as I did but it just kept on going. I knew we were going to throw it a lot but I didn't think we were going to throw it as much. I'm definitely not a speed burner but I have enough speed to get away from people when I need to."
Smith also plans on attending camps at Alabama and Vanderbilt during the summer.