Shannon Smith had been seeing it for the entire football season: Troy commitment Shannon Smith.
But something lately told Smith that maybe he needed to take one more visit before he made it official. So, on the weekend of Jan. 18, Smith decided to visit a school that had never been totally out of the picture.
And on that visit, Smith found his new home.
Smith made it official Wednesday, as he signed with Middle Tennessee State.
I went on the trip, and everyone was so great to me, said Smith who was one of five Seminoles to sign scholarships. I felt like after I visited, it was where my heart was telling me to go. The coaches and players were all great, and they run the same offense as we run at Westside, so that was another plus. I felt like it gave me the best opportunity to grow into the football player and person that I want to be. Middle Tennessee really never gave up on me, and they acted like they really wanted me. I am just very happy with my decision.
For defensive tackle Jalen Lawrence, there were really no dramatic choices.
Ive known for a few months now that Georgia State is where I wanted to be, said Lawrence, who will make the move to nose guard after lining up at defensive tackle in high school. It was really a simple decision when I found out that they wanted me, because I really love the campus and the program. I feel like we have a chance to go in and make a name for the school. I know college football will be hard, and it will be difficult to earn playing time, but all I want is a chance to compete. I cant wait for the coaches to send me the workouts so I can get started.
For quarterback Noah Grayer, a last-minute trip to North Georgia paid huge dividends as he signed with first-year program Reinhardt.
I went on my visit last Friday, and I knew right away it was where I wanted to be, said Grayer, who admitted that he probably would have waited to sign if the Reinhardt offer did not come through. I just thank God for the opportunity to continue playing football, and I feel like the coaches really wanted me.
Both Kimball Magee and Brian Whitaker signed with West Georgia.
When West Georgia came to Westside and wanted to talk to me, I had a feeling that I would end up going there, said Magee, who said he will return kicks and play on the offensive side of the ball after playing defensive back at Westside. I know it is a great fit for me, and it helps that Brian is going there, too. He is like my brother, so I really could not ask for a better situation.
For Whitaker, one of the main goals he was looking for was early playing time.
My goal is to make all-conference as a freshman, said Whitaker, who chose West Georgia over Western Carolina. I just cant wait to play football again because I really love the game. I always have had a goal of playing college football, and I am ready to get started.