July 29, 2006

Expected visit could result in commitment

Ole Miss could pick up its 17th commitment as early as Saturday afternoon.

One of Tennessee's top linebackers Isaiah Smith will take an unofficial visit to Oxford on Saturday and according to the standout defender the likelihood of a commitment is pretty good.

"I love Ole Miss," Smith said Friday night. "I'm taking my mom down to see the campus, I would say that there is a nine out of 10 chance that I will commit to the Rebels after my visit tomorrow."

Stealing one away from the Volunteers will be what Ole Miss coach Ed Orgeron will be doing if Smith is swayed away from his home state University of Tennessee team. Both Tennessee and Ole Miss have issued official offers to the standout linebacker.

Smith, a 6-foot-0, 225-pound linebacker that runs a 4.5 forty, earned all state and all region honors while leading his Columbia Central High to a good season last year.

Ole Miss stole a big time linebacker from the University of Tennessee a few years ago, when Tennessee failed to offer Ole Miss All-American linebacker Patrick Willis from Bruceton (TN).

"I went to Ole Miss for one of their camps and really enjoyed the campus, the facilities and the campus," Smith said. "It was a beautiful campus in a smaller college town that's perfect for me."

One thing that stood out to Smith during his Ole Miss visit was the bond that Orgeron had with his current Rebel team.

"The closeness of the team with Coach O is very obvious," Smith said. "You can tell they are building something special in Oxford and I want to be a part of it."

Smith will arrive in Oxford sometime after lunch on Saturday and if everything goes as he plans he will probably give the Rebel coaching staff his pledge Saturday afternoon.

"Like I said earlier if everything goes well and mom loves the campus and coaches as much as I do then I will most likely make my decision while I'm there tomorrow," Smith said. "It just feels right to me."

Smith ended his junior season with over 60 tackles and five sacks last year on defense while adding over 20 receptions for over 290 yards and four more scores.

Smith really likes the Rebel coaching staff and singled out Coach Orgeron, Coach Dave Saunders the linebacker coach and his recruiting coach Hugh Freeze as main reasons that Ole Miss is leading for his services.

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