The winner is in, but the envelope remains sealed.
Four-star linebacker Antonio Smothers has chosen a school. Until Thursday afternoon, however, he'll keep his selection to himself. The final three programs in the running for the Scottsdale (Ariz.) Community college four-star prospect are Arizona, Miami and Kansas State, but just one will be standing by Thursday evening.
Roughly 24 hours before Smothers announces his choice, he broke down the perks of each college and where he stands on the eve of his verbal commitment.
Out of the final three, you've visited Arizona and Miami, right? So let's start with Miami. What do you like about the Hurricanes?
First and foremost, it's the history at Miami. They have a great history, especially a history of linebackers. I really like the coaches as people and as coaches. And then, on top of that, it's Miami. I know that there, after football season, there's still stuff to do.
What about Arizona? That's just a few hours from your junior college. What makes Arizona appealing?
I took two unofficials there, so I know a lot about it. It's real familiar to me. I like where they're going. I like Rich Rodriguez and his staff. I like how that place is family orientated. That staff has been together for a long time. I love that new facility and I love the defense. The defense they they play fits perfect for me.
You have a former junior college teammate there, right?
Yeah, we have a corner that's committed there right now, Patrick Glover.
Are you guys pretty close?
Yes. We're tight.
What about K-State? I think people were surprised that they're on the final list just because you haven't even visited. What stands out about that program?
I call them JUCO U. They have a lot of JUCO players and they graduate a lot of their JUCO players. I like the way Arthur Brown plays. I know that Coach Bill Snyder is really detailed and whatnot. Coach Mike Cox actually coaches my head coach here at Scottsdale.
What's he tell you about being coached by Mike Cox?
He said that it's either gonna be real good for me or it's gonna be real bad. He says there's no in between with Coach Cox. He says Coach Cox is a hard-nosed type of coach that will definitely get me ready for the next level, but how much I like him and how I do is up to how I want to work.
When did you make up your mind? Do you already know which school you'll choose or are you still going back and forth?
I pretty much have my mind made up already.
Have you called the coaches and informed them of the choice yet or do they not know?
The coaches know my final three. I told them that. But I haven't told the school I am picking yet..
So they're just going to find out when everybody else does?
So what's on your mind going into this? Does it feel good to almost have all of this over with?
I'm happy, yeah. I'm confident in my decision. I'm not just doing it to have it out of the way. Everybody tells me that more schools may come along, but I already know where I want to go, so that doesn't matter to me. I just want to focus on my junior college season, the school that I'm choosing and how I'm going to go about getting there.
How you plan to announce this thing? Is there going to be a ceremony or something?
Probably on Instagram, really. That gets posted to my Twitter, too.
Any idea what time this is happening?
I don't have a time yet. Most likely, it will be in the morning or close to noon.
Yeah. Around 11:00 or 12:00 my time.