Inside the Recruitment: '19 LHP Blake Smith commits to Kent State

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Blake Smith, LHP Badin HS, Class of 2019

PBR: Why did you choose Kent State?

Smith: Kent State has the perfect combination of a great baseball program and a great school. I loved the facilities and I think the coaches can help me become the best pitcher and person I can be. I know they can develop me so I can reach my full potential. 

PBR: What other schools were you considering?

Smith: I was considering schools such as Purdue, Wright State, and Ohio State, before making my decision. 

PBR: Where did the coaching staff first see you and how did your
relationship develop?

Smith: The coaches at Kent State first saw me at the PBR Top Prospect Games. I got in contact with Coach Marconi through my summer ball coach, Frank Russo. I called him regularly and eventually set up a visit. As soon as I was there, I immediately knew this was the place I wanted to continue my baseball and educational future. 

PBR: Was the recruiting process what you expected?

Smith: The recruiting process was a hectic but exciting time, as I expected. I can't thank Coach Russo enough for getting me looked at, and helping me make my decisions. It took a lot  of work on his part and I appreciate every bit of it. 

PBR: How does it feel to be a part of a Division 1 baseball program?

Smith: It feels amazing, I couldn't be happier. I still have a long way to go to become the pitcher I want to be, but I'm more determined than ever to make that happen.

PBR: Who do you play for in the summer and what was the most memorable experience from this summer?

Smith: I play for the 16u Cincy Flames in the summer. My most memorable experience by far was the speech our assistant coaches, Lance Durham and Cam Satterwhite, gave at the end of one of our games. I learned a lot about being a man that day, and I can't thank them enough. 

PBR:  What person has the great impact on your baseball career and why?

Smith: The person who has had the greatest impact on my baseball career is my pitching coach at Badin, Coach Chuck McKinney. No matter how I throw, he always has faith in me and never gives up. He's one of the most influential people in my life. 

PBR: What were your stats last spring season?

Smith: I didn't play a lot during the school season, but when I did, I did not perform how I should've. I threw only 5 innings for Varsity, and the rest was spent developing on JV. I can't wait to get back on the mound in the spring and hopefully help bring another state title to Badin Baseball.