Chicago, Illinois defensive lineman Enoch Smith, Jr. knows a lot about private schools as he attends Mount Carmel high school in his hometown. Smith had an inkling he might like his visit to Notre Dame, but he had no idea what was about to happen when he recently camped at Notre Dame this past Friday.
“I was really caught by surprised, said Smith, Jr. about the scholarship offered he received from the Notre Dame coaching staff. “I was working out, and then Coach Elston said Coach Kelly wanted to see me in his office. I sat down and spoke with Coach Kelly and then he told me he was offering me a full scholarship to Notre Dame.”
Smith and his family were elated with the news.
“I was extremely excited,” Smith said. “My whole family was. We were just thrilled. You hope and pray that this would happen, but it really caught me by surprise. I really wasn’t expecting it, especially this soon. I hoped it would happen, but I wasn’t expecting it. I think we were all surprised by it.”
The 6-foot-2, 260-pound defensive end prospect, who wants to major in engineering, didn’t get a chance to speak with Kelly long, but he has plans to visit Notre Dame again in the near future.
“We spoke a bit about my major,” he said. “He told me about how high Notre Dame ranks in engineering, and they have my major, which is mechanical engineering. I didn’t get a chance to really check everything out, so we plan to come back up again for a game this fall. I’m really looking forward to seeing more about Notre Dame.”
With six offers already, including offers from Purdue, Illinois and Indiana, Smith is already off to a fast start with recruiting in 2014.
“I really didn’t think things would go this quickly,” Smith said. “Notre Dame seems a lot like what I’m comfortable with. I’m excited to go see it again. I think it’s a great place where I could excel.”
Smith said he plans to take his time with his decision, and also plans to visit a few more schools in the near future.
“I just want to see how everything unfolds,” he said. “I don’t plan to make a decision right away, but if something hit me I might. I’m just going to see how everything unfolds. I’m going to camp at Minnesota and Cincinnati in July, and we’ll see where we’re at after that.
One thing is certain: the Irish definitely got Smith’s attention.
“I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity,” Smith said again of his offer. “Notre Dame has one of the best educations in the country. It’s an honor to have a scholarship offer from such a prestigious University. It’s just been a great day. A really great day. Words can’t express how I’m feeling right now.”