Hanahan's Tre Smalls to decide between Navy, Army, or App State
You can tell what type of athlete Tre Smalls is by looking at his list of accomplishments. He’s helped Hanahan High Schools win two straight state championships in track and field. He also is an all-state candidate in football and was recently selected to play in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas.
You can tell what type of student Smalls is by checking out the final three schools on his recruiting list: App State, Navy and West Point.
Smalls is a 6-2, 220-pound linebacker for Hanahan. He’s been timed at 4.52 seconds in the 40-yard dash and was averaging a dozen tackles in the Hawks’ first five games this season.
But Smalls is more than muscles and might. He has a 3.65 GPA despite his busy athletic calendar. He also plays basketball and competes in track and field. His dream is to play in the NFL, but his meal ticket just might be his academic side.
“He works really hard at it. Academics are important to him,” Hanahan coach Charlie Patterson said. “He’s a great student and it starts at home. His mother (Nicole) works in the (school) district. Both parents stress that academics trump anything.”
Smalls will play in the Dec. 19 Shrine Bowl, which pits the top seniors from South Carolina against their counterparts from North Carolina. Smalls will be joined on the roster by Hawk teammate Samuel Denmark, one of the state’s top wide receivers who has committed to play for Virginia Tech.
It is the first time in school history that two players were selected to play in the prestigious all-star game, which is the oldest high school football all-star game in the nation.
The last Hawk to play in the Shrine Bowl was Brandon Ford in 2007.
Smalls was named after his father, Leon.He said he was excited about being selected to play in the game.
“But more than anything, it is a humbling experience,” Smalls said. “It’s great that Sam made the team. He will represent the school, the Lowcountry and South Carolina well.”
Smalls began the season as one of the top defensive players in the state. He said the expectations add pressure.
“But what it comes down to is that you go out there and play the game.”
The Shrine Bowl means Smalls will miss the early part of the Hawks’ basketball season because of the overlapping of the two sports’ calendars.
But Smalls will be out on time for the beginning of the Hawks’ track and field season. He won the silver medal at the Class AAA state meet in the shot put with a put of 51-11, which was four inches behind teammate Dominique Green.
As a sophomore, he was third in the state in the discus to help the Hawks claim the state title.
But for now, Smalls is only focusing on football and the college matriculation process.
“It’s an interesting process,” Smalls said. “Right now, we’re sifting through the pros and cons of military life. That’s what I’m going through right now.”