||05-03-2005 09:52 PM
I thought you might like to read this additional information from his Web site. The last few lines are kind of interesting.
The Measure of a Man - Faith and Passion Drive Southern’s All-American Offensive Tackle Myniya Smith
Standing 6 feet 6 inches and weighing 340 pounds, Myniya Smith is an imposing figure. When Smith was born July 21, 1981, he was the largest baby recorded at the hospital weighing 11 pounds 2 ounces. It was at that point that his family knew he was going to be special and standout from his peers. Not many know just how impressively Smith has measured up ever since.
Smith, an All-American and All-Southwest Athletic Conference (SWAC) offensive tackle, recently finished a dominating football career at Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA and is currently preparing for the 2005 NFL Draft this coming April. At Southern, Smith stood out for his accomplishments on the football field and for his leadership skills as captain, where he started since his sophomore season in 2002. His long list of awards include: 2003 and 2004 All-American; 2003 and 2004 first team All-SWAC; 2004 first team All-Louisiana; 2003 SWAC and Black college football champions.
Before the 2004 Bayou Classic, Coach Pete Richardson of Southern University spoke regarding the leadership qualities of Smith stating, “We’ve got tradition (at Southern),” “Our offensive line is the strength of the team. Myniya Smith, is our leader.” Smith has embodied those same qualities Coach Pete Richardson spoke of both on and off the football field.
It is typically hard to miss a man Smith’s size (6-6, 340 pounds), but that is what sometimes happens when he leaves the many children that look up to Smith at Oakdale Park where he graciously spends time with children in the New Orleans community. The children love being around him and he is such a great example of what hard work and faith can create. “It’s inspiring to just be around a man not only of his size, but of his character. His faith has allowed him to grow into the man he is today and he shares that with our children,” said Coach Randolph Scott of Oakdale said.
Faith in god and passion for the game he loves have been the driving force behind the amazing story of Smith’s success. Growing up in the St. Thomas housing projects in New Orleans, Louisiana, Smith was always the largest kid and one of the most mature kids around. “Even as a child, Myniya has always been not only one of the biggest kids around, but also one of the most mature. Early on in high school, everyone thought he was already in his twenties,” said Smith’s mother, Idella Casimier.
Smith began playing football in the seventh grade and went on to be a huge contributor to his football team at West Jefferson high school in New Orleans, LA. Football has been one of the channels Smith used to receive a college scholarship and achieve a college degree.
His passion, faith and leadership qualities were certainly displayed during his last collegiate football game at the 2004 SWAC Championship game in Birmingham, AL. Southern lead for a majority of the game against Alabama State and could not hold on, but even in a game where Smith had a dominating performance (even knocking over assignments that were not even his man on plays), Smith was fighting to tackle a defender who had just intercepted his quarterback. Emotional as he left the field and completed his collegiate career, Smith again showed why he has always measured up.
Coach Jimmy Warren, one of Smith’s former high school coach and a former defensive back during the great Oakland Raider mystical years proclaimed, “Myniya Smith has the talent and character to be a first round NFL draft choice. He is going to be something special in the National Football League.”
Did Casserly and company find a gem? Certainly positive from his Web site, but its being said by others. Time will tell, but we could certainly use a dominating LT. Is he our future LT?