A starter for Newark his sophomore year, Newark OL excelled at nose tackle Wildcats. He played mostly offensive tackle during his junior season though he also saw some time at defensive end and some of the top college in the contry are taking notice, including the majority of the Big 10.
We caught up with Smith for more.
Newark lineman Dannell Smith is not as well known as some other top line prospects from the Buckeye State. But Smith is a good one with unlimited potential.
The 6-foot-4 and 290-pound Smith was a starter at nose tackle for Newark during his sophomore season. He played mostly on the offensive line his junior season, though Smith did see some playing time at defensive end too.
“He's a big, strapping kid that can run,” Newark coach Jeff Buchanan said. “He's a pretty remarkable athlete.”
The Buckeyes are definitely interested in Smith.
“They really like him,” Buchanan said. “Jim (Heacock) has been here twice.”
Smith has the tools recruiters like to see. In addition to his size, Smith runs the 40-yard dash in 5.0 seconds, bench presses 360 pounds and can squat 550.
“I think his natural position will be defensive end or defensive tackle in college,” Buchanan said.
Schools from all over the Midwest are interested and some southern schools have entered the picture too.
“Every Big Ten school except Northwestern is recruiting me,” Smith said. “Plus the Ohio schools and Louisville and North Carolina State. North Carolina State offered me a full-ride.”
If Smith takes care of everything academically look for many other schools to also offer him a scholarship and Ohio State could definitely be one of them.
Smith has visited OSU twice in the past month.
“I went to their junior day when Ohio State played Michigan State in basketball,” Smith said. “And I went to their second spring practice.
“I really like it there. They have great facilities. I talk to coach Heacock a lot. They're talking more about defense with me.”
In addition to Ohio State, Smith has also visited Cincinnati and plans to go to Louisville on Friday. He would have liked to have attended Ohio State's spring game, but has a track meet on Saturday.
“I'm most interested in Ohio State and Illinois,” Smith said.