ITO SMITH SCOUTING REPORT

March 27, 2018

 

ITO SMITH | RB | SOUTHERN MISS 

Height: 5090 | Weight: 201 | Arm: 28 7/8 | Hand: 9 3/8 

 

Romarius "Ito" Smith is the feature playmaker in the Golden Eagles offense where he accounted for 35% of the team's offensive TD production in 2017. Smith is an ultra-productive runner who currently ranks 4th all-time in Conference USA with 820 attempts for 4,536 yards (5.5 average) with 42 career rushing TDs. Smith has also tacked on 403 receptions for 1,446 yards and 7 TDs as a receiver out of the backfield. Smith had an impressive showing at the Senior Bowl in Mobile and proved that he belongs in the same tier as some of the more touted runners in this class.

 

Smith is a shorter Warrick Dunn-like runner who relies on quick processing, incendiary acceleration and courage through contact to gain production. Although he has shorter arms, he does not allow that to inhibit his ability as a receiver and he uses his height to his advantage to keep his pad level low and win with sudden cutting ability.

 

Smith is a very low runner who gets close to the ground upon acceleration, allowing him to pick up extra yards through contact. Smith has next-level vision and can see defenders out of his periphery without turning his head and maintaining a downhill mentality. Smith can make tacklers miss in a phone booth with a lethal jump cut and his COD ability is on par with Dion Lewis and LeSean McCoy. As explosive of a runner as Smith is, teams will especially covet that he is an all-around back. As a receiver, Smith is an asset on Screen passes where he comes back to catch the football and turns up field with a sudden burst. In pass protection, Smith is an extremely willing blocker who won't hesitate to sacrifice his body but has a tendency of superfluously shuffling his feet and failing to plant, causing him to get overpowered by more powerful blitzers. Smith rarely comes out of the game and shows good stamina and durability.

 

As a child, Smith resembled Judge Lance Ito who presided over the OJ Simpson trial and the nickname has stuck since. Smith is a diligent player off the field and football is important to him. Smith enjoys watching film in his spare time and has focused greatly on increasing his ability as a receiver and learning a full route tree from the slot, adding to his value. Smith has been working out twice a day, six times a week with Armed Sports based out of Humble, Texas and should have a strong showing in his March 29th Pro Day. Smith can have a similar role as Chris Thompson as an "Air Back" in the NFL and could slip to day three due to a loaded RB class, but whichever team gets him will get a player who can be a key contributor to the roster for the next 8 years.

 

Overall Grade: 78

Athletic Ability: 5

Physical: 3

Play Strength: 4

Play Speed: 6

Competitive Toughness: 6

Power Running: 3

Elusiveness: 5

"Home Run" Ability: 4

Ball Carrier Vision: 5

Ball Security: 4

Pad Level: 4

Catching Ability: 4

Run After Catch: 4

Route Variety: 5

Pass Pro Technique: 2

Pass Pro Willingness: 4

Maturity: 5

Production: 5

 

Player Comparison: Chris Thompson

Projected Round: Round 5/6

 

 

 

For information on our grading criteria, click here.

 

 

 

 

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