Maurice Smith - Dulles to Alabama
National signing day is one high school kids, the fulfillment of one dream and the first step towards a bigger one, as Dulles defensive back Maurice Smith put it.
“(You get) the chance to do what we love to do and get a top notch education and maybe even come out for the draft.”
For the first time ever, Fort Bend ISD brought all of its high schools together to celebrate the district’s football players who signed a National Letter of Intent. Nine of the 11 high schools in the district had players move on to play at the college level, headlined by Marshall, which had seven signees.
“It’s a relief to finally get to signing day, finally get this out of the way,” Marshall offensive lineman Maurice Porter said after signing his letter of intent to Baylor. “A lot of people asked me ‘do you still want to go to Baylor? Are you still committed?’ For a while I had other schools but nothing compares to Baylor.”
Marshall defensive end Deon Hollins, the Touchdown Club of Houston’s Defensive Player of the Year, was the most heralded of the Buffaloes who signed a LOI. He chose to leave Texas and signed with UCLA, committing late in the process to the Bruins.
“Just my parents are OK with it,” Hollins said when he explained the delay. “That’s real big for me for my parents to be okay with it. My mom wanted me to go to school in Texas and that’s a real big factor. It played real heavy in my decision, but she’s happy with the decision and so am I.”
Smith, who signed his LOI from the University of Alabama. Smith had been committed for months, but as signing day approached rumors started to swirl that he might be wavering, causing Nick Saban to hop on a plane to pay a visit.
“That was legendary,” Smith said with a smile about Saban’s visit. “You only dream about a head coach like that coming out to your living room and when you’re given the chance or opportunity to play for him. It was amazing and I am blessed to be able to play for somebody like that.”