Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.
This week's subject is 2013 Penn State commit Anthony Smith, a cornerback out of Wayne (Pa.) Valley Forge Military who will enroll early and still boasts four years of eligibility. The postgraduate student received a scholarship offer Saturday during an official visit and committed Sunday.
Penn State was Smith's one and only FBS offer, and he will be given every chance to contribute immediately.
NittanyNation: A lot of kids dream about playing major college football but many come to the realization that's not going to happen. You had a very unique road here. So, let me ask: When did you first have that dream, and did that dream ever kind of die before you found yourself in the position you're now in?
Anthony Smith: It started off when I first got a football in my hands. Almost every kid who plays football aspires to play football on a big stage like Penn State. But when I was a sophomore in high school, it really started to form and I started training hard to get where I wanted to be -- and that's why it was really discouraging not getting picked up by a school my senior year.
But I decided I wasn't going to settle for anything less, so I decided to do a postgraduate year. So it never died, but I've always had doubts when schools wouldn't answer calls and stuff like that -- but that was always motivation for me to get in the gym every day. I just used that as motivation to keep me going.
NN: What's been the most memorable tweet, message or congratulations you've gotten about your commitment?
AS: Well, it would have to be the first one -- it was from my dad. It was just a simple congratulations, but we've been through a lot and he's helped me, he's been my backbone through this whole recruiting process and he's helped so much. It was a simple congratulations, but it meant a lot.
It's been a long road. All the visits I've been on since high school, he's been there. It's just been me and my father. And just going down from emailing coaches to being disappointed and not getting picked up by anyone in high school to where I am now -- he's been by my side step by step.
NN: You'll be up to Penn State's campus in a few weeks. What are you looking forward to the most as far as being a Nittany Lion?
AS: Honestly, the football program. I'm just looking forward to the whole college experience because I haven't bee able to experience it. I'm curious to see how it is; it's different from the military academy experience. So I'm just looking forward to playing football and keeping my grades up and playing on a big stage and learning from my teammates.
NN: What's your relationship been like with secondary coach John Butler, and what kind of coach is he?
AS: We have a good relationship. We talk every day, and he's been helping me a lot with getting stuff together since this all kind of happened over a short period of time. We're getting transcripts and test scores sent to the school, and he seems like a great coach. So I'm looking forward to spending my next four, five years here.
He seems calm and collected, but I've seen guys who are calm and collected and then they're in your face on the field. So we'll see what happens when we get on the field.
NN: Besides getting an offer and committing, what was your favorite part of your official visit?
AS: Well, obviously, hanging out with the guys was great. But I think the most memorable moment was when we ran out on the field and they had music playing and the lights were on. That was the first time I've been on the Penn State football field, so it was overwhelming.
It's exhilarating. It really gets your blood pumping, and it makes you want to play right away. I just pictured how next season was going to be and how the next four years were going to go. It seems a little weird to say because it's hard to explain. I can only imagine how it's going to be during the games.