Athlete of the Week: Jay SmithWAHS senior Jay Smith loves football and his school
November 10, 2017
By Tyler Harrison | Contributing Writer
With his combination of work ethic and determination, it’s no surprise that West Ashley High senior Jay Smith is the Athlete of the Week. “He leads by example and always does the right things on the field and in the classroom,” says Head Varsity Football Coach Robert Marion.
Smith has played defensive end on varsity all four years of his high school career. “He is one of the team leaders and is very important to our defense,” says Marion. Having the opportunity to play with upperclassmen as a freshman and sophomore helped Smith realize the kind of player and teammate he wanted to be. “It taught me how to be a leader and how to be humble no matter the accolades you get,” says Smith.
This isn’t the first time Smith has been the Athlete of the Week; his talent and hard work have helped him earn multiple accolades over the last four years. In football, Smith was nominated for the North-South Senior All-Star Team, and during preseason, he was nominated for the All-Lowcountry Team. Last year in wrestling, Smith was ranked 8th in the state at one point during the season.
That work ethic and determination are evident in his training. He even uses his free time to better himself by doing extra workouts. Smith believes that all of his hard work has paid off this year in football. “I feel like I really improved a lot from last season to this season,” says Smith. He claims some of the things he’s improved on are not getting as nervous before games and knowing how to have fun on the field when he’s playing.
Smith enjoys the bonds he creates during football season. “It’s a team sport. You can’t do it as an individual,” says Smith. “The bond between teammates and coaches is like a brotherhood.” This is why he calls football his passion. “You always have to have different personalities on the team and I think mine fits well,” says Smith.
In addition to being a hardworking and dedicated leader, one of the best aspects of Smith’s personality is his willingness and ability to show his school spirit. He dresses up and participates in any school event that he can, including doing volunteer work in the community. “Go Wildcats!” says Smith.
Smith wants to continue playing football in college so he has been researching and applying for a number of different scholarships. His top two choices right now are The Citadel, because of its well-disciplined program, and Coastal Carolina University, because he likes their style of play. He plans to major in Marine Biology because of his fascination with animals.