By Jesse Wood
Dec. 2, 2013. The stress of impressing college recruiters at Saturday’s state championship game will be absent for Fulton High School (Knoxville, Tenn.) quarterback Penny Smith, who announced his commitment to Appalachian State University this weekend.
Smith is a dual-threat quarterback who is a speedster on the ground and can air it out, judging through a YouTube highlight reel of his senior season’s first eight games.
Along with being only two hours away from family, Smith told 247 Sports that the athletics facilities on the campus of ASU were impressive. He also visited UT-Chattanooga, UT-Martin and Campbell.
“I want to commit to App State because I just really like the coaches. I like all the fans and the facilities are nice,” he said. “[Distance] plays a big role, I’m only two hours away and I want my family to come see me play.”
He added, “[App] had a losing season this year and I just seen all the fans just still come out and support the football team. That’s what I liked the most when I visited up there … All the facilities they had, I’ve never seen anything like that. I visited MTSU, UAB, and UT-Chattanooga. It’s better than all of them.”
As John Miller noted in his 247 Sports piece, Smith will join J.P. Caruso, another quarterback commit in the 2014 class. Caruso plays for Palm Beach Gardens High School in Florida and is also described as a dual-threat quarterback. Caruso and his high school team are one win from the state championship game as well.
“They said [they’re recruiting me as a] quarterback, but if that don’t work the other coach, Coach Brown, said he’d snatch me up at DB in a second cause I’m very athletic and I can play anywhere. So it really doesn’t matter to me [which position I play],” said Smith.
Miller added that with the recruitment of Smith, Appalachian State is projected to climb to the No. 1 recruiting class in the Sun Belt Conference. The 2014-15 season will be App State’s first year in FBS.
App State’s 2014 recruiting class is also listed No. 80 out of all the football programs.
See listing of other commits here.
See listing of FBS recruiting class rankings here.