Dec. 8, 2010
Senior linebacker Kendall Smith and his teammates are eagerly anticipating their appearance in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl on Dec. 31. The graduating senior took time out of his preparations for his final exams to speak with seminoles.com on what he is looking forward to as bowl season begins.
Q: How do you feel about going to Atlanta for the Chick-Fil-A Bowl?
KS: “It’s going to be very exciting. I’ve been in Atlanta a couple of times before and I have family up there so it’ll be like going back home.”
Q: You said that you have family in Atlanta, are you planning to have some sort of reunion with your family after the bowl game to celebrate your season?
KS: “Definitely, I plan to see my family, of course. It’s my last college game so I’m going to enjoy it, hopefully get a win and celebrate Christmas. A later Christmas for me with my family since I can’t go home.”
Q: What is it like going home to your family seeing as that you rarely have the opportunity to?
KS: “It’s everyone getting together and catching up. My cousins and I, we grew up together, so we all get together to catch up and then just clown and joke and have fun. They ask me a lot about college and people that I’ve met.”
Q: Does it get a little crazy?
KS: “Yes, it gets crazy. They try to make me feel comfortable. It’s nice going home and doing what I used to do, having the chance to just play around.”
Q: Can you tell us what it was like being in Charlotte?
KS: “It was a different atmosphere. It showed us where we belonged as a team and that all the hard work had paid off. I told a few of the other seniors that all the hard work we went through in three years had finally paid off even though the game didn’t work out for us. But I think that the class that’s under me now knows the feeling (of going to the Championship) and they will be more prepared in the future. They know what it takes to get there. ”
Q: Charlotte was different for the Seminoles, especially with the harsh cold and rain. What was it like playing under those conditions?
KS: “It was pretty cold and rainy. But it wasn’t something that I’m not used to because I’ve been playing football for about eight years now. It’s just a part of the game. You go from high school to college, and if you’re fortunate enough to make it to the NFL, you realize it’s a part of the job to go out there and play in any kind of weather. That’s why we practice in the rain, but we don’t practice in lightning because that’s dangerous. But if it’s snow, sleet, rain then Coach Fisher is trying to prepare us for those situations so that we know what to do and play hard football.”
Q: The senior class this year went to the ACC championship, something that hasn’t been done for a while now. This season was a huge change from last year, what are you and the other seniors going to take away from your time here?
KS: “(Going to the ACC Championship) was something that we always wanted from the beginning of the season; that was one of our goals. Even though we didn’t win it, I feel that it was a big accomplishment. It was big for the team and it was big for Seminole nation. When people ask me what the seniors did to make it to the ACC Championship game I always say that we did nothing. We did what we usually did and there are a lot of hard workers on the team. The few seniors that we have on the team are some of the hardest workers; they do what they have to do in the classroom and on the field to lead by example. The team is very young and they are definitely hard workers who understand football and I have the utmost respect for the younger guys.”
Q: The Chick-Fil-A Bowl is your last college game. Has the realization sunk in yet? What goes through your head when you think about Atlanta?
KS: “I haven’t thought about it yet because I’ve been focused on graduating, seeing my family and going for a little break. But when the game does arrive on (December 31st) I’ll probably be emotional. I thought I was going to be a big emotional guy during the game against Florida, but I held my tears back. I think this last game is going to be crazy since it’s my last collegiate football game. It’s something that I’m looking forward to but I’m going to miss the game.”
Q: Walking away from FSU, do you think you had a good final season?
KS: “I definitely think I had a good season. It’s something that I didn’t harp on; I just knew what I needed to do for the team and to be a leader, which definitely comes along with the job of playing middle linebacker. I knew that I had to make sure everyone was on point in the defensive side of the ball.”
Q: If you didn’t play football and could have any super power, what would it be?
KS: “To read people’s minds.”
Q: Really. Why?
KS: “I don’t know. It’s something that I would like. I always wonder what is on other people’s minds, what they’re thinking about and how they feel about other people. I watched a few movies and I thought that it would be cool to know what other people are thinking about.”
Q: So you have your mind reading super power, which teammates would you want beside you to help you fight crime?
KS: “Nigel Bradham would be the Juggernaut… Wait no, Vince Williams would be the Juggernaut…”
Q: What would his power be?
KS: “Well his power would be to just run through walls because he’s a big guy. Nigel Bradham would be Superman. Markus White… I would have to make his super hero up because he’s just full of energy and always running around all the time. Rodney Hudson would be the smart guy, the leader. He’s really sarcastic and very smart and always knows what he’s doing.”
Questions by Monica Cady Sports Information Student Assistant