Swinney vows to jump in Lake Hartwell for OrTre Smith
|Tuesday, July 26, 2016, 8:01 AM- -|
Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney vowed to jump in Lake Hartwell if OrTre Smith gave a verbal commitment to the Clemson coaching staff following last Friday’s All In Cookout, and while Smith didn’t pull the trigger on a commitment he is getting closer to a decision date.
Smith is rated as the No. 3 overall player in the state and is rated as No. 242 in the ESPN 300 and owns 14 offers from Clemson, Florida St., Georgia Tech, Louisville, Ole Miss, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Tennessee among others.
Smith followed Clemson’s cookout with a visit to South Carolina’s similar recruiting event on Saturday. His s mother, former Clemson volleyball player Tashia Greene, discussed the recent stops with TigerNet earlier this week.
“We had a really good time at both cookouts. Clemson, again, it was a good chance for OrTre to actually sit down with the coaches and get that time back that he hasn't really gotten by himself,” Greene said. “That was good for him. He enjoyed himself. Especially in talking to some of the current players and the other recruits.
“The visit to South Carolina was really great. OrTre has built a good relationship with those coaches. It was good for him to be able to sit down with the coaches and talk to a lot of the recruits that were there, along with some of the 2018 prospects. It was good.”
Greene said she doesn’t know where her son is headed, and she isn’t sure he does, either.
“I am not sure if he knows it or not. Everybody thinks that I know or they think that they know,” Greene said. “I get phone calls and text messages and people inbox me all the time. It's crazy. They want to know if he is going to Clemson or South Carolina or Georgia, and I tell them I don't know. I am allowing him to do what he wants to do. And when he figures out what he wants to do he will come talk to me. But when we are at home, we don't talk football at all.”
Swinney spoke privately with Smith before he left the cookout, and that’s when he threatened to go jump in the lake. Literally.
“They really spoke privately. I really didn't ask him too much about the conversation,” Greene said. “But when we were saying our goodbyes, Coach Swinney was really funny, saying, 'Right now, if you commit, I will jump in Lake Hartwell.' It was good to see the other side of the coaches. When you are recruiting it's a lot of time on the telephone and texting, so it was good to get that face-to-face time at both Clemson and South Carolina.”
The family still has plans for Smith to announcement his commitment on September 11th.
“We are going to have his 18th birthday on the 11th. He tells me that everybody is so sad on his birthday - because of 9-11 - so this year he said he wanted to announce on his birthday,” Greene said. “So we are going to have a birthday commitment celebration. It will be family and close friends, and I've told him that if he feels he isn't ready then we won't do it.”
Smith had 84 catches for 1,436 yards and 18 touchdowns as a junior. As a sophomore, Smith registered 31 catches for 462 yards and four touchdowns.