Junior to Watch: Paul Smith
School: Owasso, Okla.
Position: Pro-style quarterback
Size and speed: Smith is 6-foot-3 and 181 pounds. He has been timed at 4.7 seconds in the 40-yard dash. Smith also has a 225-pound bench-press and can squat 395 pounds. He also excels in the classroom with a 3.5 grade-point average.
Statistics: Smith is one of the most storied passers in Oklahoma prep history. He threw for 2,691 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior. As a sophomore, he led Edmond Deer Creek to the state championship with a 3,077-yard season. He also threw for 27 scores that season and rushed for an additional six touchdowns. He is only around 1,200 yards away from becoming the state of Oklahoma’s all-time leading passer.
Honors: Honorable mention all-state and a candidate for one of the top 10 players in the state of Oklahoma for the Class of 2003.
Favorite Schools: Smith’s list is already long with heavy interest from Texas Tech, Miami, Colorado, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Kansas, Baylor, Stanford, Northwestern, Duke, Penn State and Texas A&M. His father – and coach – Ron Smith said Texas Tech might have a slight edge “because they throw the ball 40 times a game” but also pointed out that Smith is still very open at this point in the recruiting process.
Skinny: Sometimes coaches and fathers like to brag a little too much. But in the case of Ron Smith, the coach at Owasso, Okla., it looks like he has good reason too boast for however long he wants to.
That’s because he has one of the Midland’s best quarterbacks and quite possibly one of the top 100 players in the nation living in his house and leading his team on the gridiron.
Recruiting fans meet Paul Smith, the 6-foot-3, 181-pound record-breaking quarterback from Owasso, Okla.
“He has all of the things that you’re looking for in a quarterback and in a leader,” Smith said about his prize pupil.
“I’ve coached nine Division I quarterbacks and I think Paul has the special ability and might be the best in the bunch.
“He was also lucky enough to grow up with Cale and Mike Gundy since I coached them, and he learned a lot from them. His brother is also the starter at Central Oklahoma and he owns the national record for most touchdowns passes in a quarter (five), and the little brother looks like he ended up with most of the athletic ability.”
In fact, Smith was really the only quarterback that was able to put a scare into five-time defending state champion Jenks last season.
“He had 280 yards passing and rushed for 94 yards against them,” Smith said.
“He was the only quarterback to put up 30 points on Jenks. I’ll send you the tape, but there is one play that he breaks free for about 80 yards and Jason Carter (Oklahoma’s highly ranked cornerback from the Class of 2002) was barely able to chase him down.”
But it wasn’t the stats against Jenks that proved to coach and to others in the state of Oklahoma that he’s special. It was what he did between plays.
“They beat the crap out of him,” Smith said. “He didn’t have a big line to protect him, and they were taking their shots on him. He peed blood for three days, but he didn’t come out of the game. He has such a big heart.”
But there is also no questioning his potential.
Smith has already caught the eye of several major Division I coaches and is ready to rack in scholarship offers from teams all over.
“Miami has already offered an official visit,” Smith said. “Coach Coker said he wants us to come down for their one-day camp. Paul is going to stand out there and throw the ball. He said if he likes what he’ll offer him on the spot.”
“Colorado has already offered him a visit, too. Texas Tech might be the front-runner because they throw it 40 times a game. Stanford, Northwestern and Duke told me as soon as his test score comes in an offer his going to come his way.
“Texas A&M and Oklahoma State have told him that he can play both baseball and football for him. Coach Paterno from Penn State called and talked to me about Paul for 15 minutes last week. And then coach Long from Oklahoma and the coaches from Kansas and Baylor called, too. They all seem to want him.”
So let the chase begin.