At 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds, Calvary Day’s Mike Smith has the size to accompany skill and dominate on the soccer field.
Just a sophomore, the peerless receiver is having a breakthrough season for the Cavaliers, and it was only a matter of time before major college football programs took notice.
That first offer came in a phone call Monday, and it was important as South Carolina tight ends coach Erik Kimrey told Smith they were offering him a scholarship.
“We had a good conversation, then he suddenly told me they were making me an offer. I couldn’t believe him,” Smith said in a phone interview. “I got out, got in my car and started screaming. I’ve been dreaming of playing college football since around 2012. My brother and I are still talking about it.”
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Smith’s older brother DeAvery Smith was an outstanding player at Beach High School, where he graduated in 2014.
“He was the first one I called, and I think he was happier than me,” said Mike Smith. “I was shocked to receive an offer from the SEC, but I know I can’t slow down. I have to keep working because our team is having a great season.”
The Cavaliers (7-0) are ranked No.2 among private Class A schools in the state as they prepare to host crosstown rival Savannah Christian on Friday night.
Smith is averaging 18 yards per catch. He has 21 receptions for 379 yards and five touchdowns.
“Mike is a very talented kid and he has the speed, size and body he will grow into,” said Calvary Day coach Mark Stroud. “He’s so athletic and is a great player already, and he’s only going to get better. When college coaches see a kid his size who can run so well, they’re going to notice him, and we’re all excited for him. He’s a huge part of our attack. “
Terry Simmons gets the first offer
Junior Terry Simmons, a 6-3, 305-pound defensive tackle, is an important part of a Cavaliers defense that allows less than 12 points per game. Simmons was a game-changer with his size, strength and athleticism.
Simmons received his first offer last weekend on a recruiting trip to Gardner-Webb.
“I was surprised as I walked into the game and they pulled me aside and told me I was their best guy in the class of 2023,” Simmons said. “It’s important to me, and I hope a lot more offers come in.”
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Simmons said he trains at “The Factory” with Rob DeLoach, whose son, Kalen DeLoach, is a starting linebacker at Florida State.
“It’s the best thing for me,” Simmons said. “Coach DeLoach helped me become a better person and I gained about 30 pounds of muscle.”
Simmons has 28 tackles, including 13 loss tackles and a pair of sacks.
“We were all waiting for this offer because Terry is a great defensive lineman,” Stroud said. “He’s very deserving. He’s tough and explosive and so difficult to deal with we’re all happy he’s part of our team.”
Savannah Christian’s Brown commits to Mercer
Savannah Christian’s Ely Brown is set to play in the big football game at Calvary on Friday night, and should see plenty of action as one of the Raiders’ star running backs and receivers.
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Brown made his college commitment last week, but it was in a different sport as the junior center fielder pledged to play baseball at Mercer University.
“Mercer has a great program and great facilities,” said Brown. “But the coaches and the players there were the most important thing in my decision, along with the academics.”
Last season, Brown hit 0.463 with an OBP of 0.570 and an OPS of 1.256. He had nine doubles, six triples, one homerun, 39 RBIs and 45 runs. He pitched for the Raiders as well, pitching 34 innings, posting a 3.08 ERA and 4-0 record.
Dennis Knight covers the sport for the Savannah Morning News. Contact him at [email protected] Twitter: @DennisKnightSMN