One day after being visited by NC State head coach Mark Gottfried on the first day of the fall recruiting period, a top prospect in the Class of 2016 has made his pledge to the ACC program.
NBC Sports confirmed that Fayetteville, North Carolina point guard Dennis Smith Jr. has verbally committed to NC State. News of his commitment was first reported by ESPN.com, and the decision doesn’t come as a surprise. While Smith trimmed his list to six schools in mid-July, it had been believed for some time that NC State was the team to beat for his commitment.
In Smith, the Wolfpack add an explosive guard who can both score and distribute the basketball at a high level from the point guard position. Unfortunately Smith will be on the sidelines for a little while, as he suffered a torn ACL at the adidas Nations camp in southern California in early August. The injury is expected to keep him out of action for anywhere from six to nine months.
With Smith in the fold NC State has taken care of the point guard position in 2016-17, regardless of what current starter Cat Barber (who’s a junior) may do at the end of the upcoming campaign. Smith is NC State’s first commitment in the Class of 2016, and with him on board Gottfried and his staff can focus more of their time on elite big men Bam Adebayo and Udoka Azubuike.
As he did with Smith, Gottfried used a helicopter as his mode of transportation to see Adebayo Wednesday.