Recruiting set to pick up for Braden Smith

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- ESPN Watch List offensive tackle Braden Smith (Olathe, Kan./Olathe) has taken the last few weeks to sit back and relax.

With the dead period in full effect, he was given some time to himself. But now that the contact period is about to get going again and teams are finishing up their bowl schedules, it will pick up again.

"Pretty much it has been going slow," he said. "But I think it is going to pick back up in January after all the bowls and stuff. I will try to take some visits to Texas and Notre Dame, places like that."

Notre Dame, a BCS Championship Game finalist, will take on Alabama Monday -- a game Smith doesn't plan on missing.

"I am definitely going to watch them play," he said of Notre Dame.

Besides the Fighting Irish, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas State, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Stanford, TCU, Texas, Texas A&M and Virginia have all offered. With so many to choose from Smith wants to make sure his selection works for him.

"I just want to go somewhere where I fit the system and feel at home," he said. "Somewhere where I just fit in."

In terms of scheme, Smith would like the opportunity to utilize his size and strength blocking for a strong running game.

"I'd like to play in a balanced system, but maybe more on the running side," he said.

Smith will visit Texas A&M next, but doesn't have any others set up at this time.