The 6-foot-2, 170-pound senior point guard from St. Anthony and the Sports U AAU program committed Monday after picking up a scholarship offer from Nebraska head coach Tim Miles.
“Since they offered me I knew it was one of the highest schools on my list,” Smith, who also considered Ole Miss and Duquesne, told SNY.tv. “I just had a gut feeling in my heart that that’s where I wanted to be.”
Smith averaged 15 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists for the Friars, who reached the New Jersey Non-Public B championship game, losing to Roselle Catholic, 60-57, on Saturday.
Smith said Miles told him he will have a chance to come in and compete for playing time next year.
“He didn’t say I will be starting,” Smith said. “I will definitely play the point guard. I will have an opportunity to get some playing time.”
Smith said he’s excited about playing in the Big Ten for a program headed to the NCAA Tournament.
“I love the coaching staff,” he said. “I think Coach Miles and Coach Smith are great guys. I like the offense they run. I’m excited about the Big Ten. I think it’s one of the top three conferences in college basketball.”
Smith joins Cincinnati-bound big man Quadri Moore of Linden among Sports U players going to NCAA Tournament bound teams next year.
“Tarin is a great get for Nebraska,” Sports U coach Brian Coleman said. “He is a smart kid with a 4.0 GPA. He’s a very good shooter and great ball-handler. He knows how to run a team and is an extension of the coach on the floor.
“He was taught by the best in the business in Coach Bob Hurley so Nebraska knows he’s prepared for the college game. We are very proud of Tarin.”