Powell (Ohio) Olentangy Liberty offensive lineman Carter Smith is seeing a surge of offer and interest this winter, becoming one of Ohio’s most heavily recruited class of 2022 prospects. The 6-foot-6 270-pound prospect has amassed well over a dozen offers and recently saw several new Power Five offers come through in just one day.
“It’s unexplainable, who expects four in one day, first of all?,” said Smith, referring to the recent offers from Georgia Tech, Ole Miss, Northwestern, and Purdue. “Then secondly, they are all Power Five offers. I didn’t really know what to think at that point, I was just mindblown.”
In addition to the offers, Smith has started to hear from a few other programs recently, including Ohio State. Long-time Olentangy High head coach and now Ohio State support staff member Ed Terwilliger got the ball rolling back in the fall for the Buckeyes.
“I’ve been texting with coach (Ed) Terwilliger since my junior season,” Smith explained. “But I actually got a chance to get on the phone with coach Al Washington (last week).”
“The first thing coach Washington told me to do was eat a sandwich,” Smith continued with a laugh. “I’m only at 270-pounds right now and they want to see their guys have a little more weight on them. So that’s my first goal, trying to get up to at least 280-pounds.”
Washington is the Central Ohio area recruiter for Ohio State. The next step will be getting Smith in touch with offensive line coach Greg Studrawa.
“(Washington) also told me that he wanted to get me on the phone with coach Stud soon,” Smith added. “He said they are excited about me and they can’t wait to see what else I have to offer.”
Just hearing from Ohio State is a meaningful step in Smith’s recruiting process growing up not too far north of campus.
“It really does (mean a lot),” Smith said. “Being able to stay home with my roots here, being able to stay at a campus with some of my friends that are going to be going there, it would be a big thing for me.”
Smith, like all of his fellow 2022 classmates, has found the past year to be a challenging one on the recruiting trail. With visits being shutdown and no summer camps last year, Smith is still trying to get a better feel for all of the schools that are recruiting him.
“It has been kind of difficult, especially trying to narrow it down,” he explained. “I’ve started doing a lot of virtual stuff since coaches are getting on Zoom calls and everything. I’ve also been speaking with my guidance counselors about some of the educational programs (at the different schools that are recruiting him).”
Among the programs that have offered, he did point to two in particular that he has clicked with so far.
“Virginia’s (O-Line) coach, coach (Garett) Tujague, we’ve had some great conversations,” Smith recalled. “We have been connected for a while now and overall we’ve clicked very well. Northwestern, (coach Kurt Anderson), we have a strong bond now and that formed very quickly because I think we just match each other’s energy really well.”
Smith is in no rush to make a decision at this point and like most players in his position is simply looking forward to the NCAA lifting the Dead Period so that he can start to visit the schools that have been offering and showing interest this winter.