Thursday, July 31, 2008

Hello Mr. Smith!

Huge news out of the men's b-ball program, and it couldn't have come at a better time. The No. 4 ranked center in the nation according to, Greg Smith, has reportedly chosen Fresno State and reneged on a verbal to Arizona.

The 6-foot-8 or 6-9 Smith (depending on who you listen to) is the most high-profile recruit since Melvin Ely. And hey, Ely, as a two-time WAC Player of the Year and best player in school history, turned out quite all right.

Moods had turned sour with fans after hearing prized point guard signee Reggie Moore wanted out of his letter of intent. The Seattle native waited 'til the last second to throw a wrench into the 'Dogs plans of handing the reigns over to him in '08-'09. Real nice of you Reggie...

But lo and behold, Smith, a three-year Edison player who has since transferred to the Bay Area for family/academic reasons, is just the anecdote. If he sticks to his committment and signs with Fresno State he will single-handedly stir up passion and excitement that's been missing from Fresno State basketball since Tark "retired."

And that deserves a lot of admiration. Red Wavers should thank Mr. Smith for having the desire to give back to his hometown and be a student-athlete at Fresno State. It takes a true hometown hero to pass up offers from a plethora of traditonal b-ball powerhouses to stay home and make a difference in the community that raised him. Not everyone realizes what a difference he can make, what trends he can set the standard for and what a huge piece of program history he can become by staying home and taking the 'Dogs to new heights.

All signs point to Greg Smith being the type of character individual who is mature enough to be the catalyst. And here's to hoping everything in his family life and in the classroom is on the upswing. Mr. Smith, count me in as one of your newest, and biggest, fans.

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