The future is bright for Leatherneck Marquis Smith

Michael Harms, Courier Staff

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Western’s football team may not be winning on the field, but that does not mean the locker room is absent of talent and amazing student athletes. Enter Marquis Smith. He came to Western from Cincinnati University and was looking to make a huge impact. Not only has he become Western’s top corner, but his demeanor and drive are something that all Leathernecks should aspire to have.

Smith starts every game day the same. He looks at his jersey, thinks, prays, says amen and gets dressed. The large number two staring directly at him is a reminder for him never to forget where he came from.

“Got to give it up to God before anything. Good, bad and the ugly,” Smith said. In 2004, Smith buried his Uncle, Marvin Lewis, who also wore the same number. “He was one of the best in his days,” Smith said. “Everyone sees that and just expectations are known.” Smith has lived up to that reputation becoming the second highest ranked CB out of Michigan before graduating high school.

“There’s always ways I can be better, at the end of the day I was number two and I wanted to be number one,” Smith said. “I was always focused on staying humble, positive and always working hard to be the number one competitor.”

It’s clear from Smith’s play on the field that he has a huge motor and only one gear: all out. People struggle to bring that type of work and energy to the field every single play, but Smith pulls strength from every facet of his life.

“I have a son, that’s my motivation… I have other people depending on me,” Smith said when talking about where he gets his drive.

“[My son] added some extra fuel to the fire. My goal is to make it to the NFL and now that he’s here I have to do everything extremely harder, Smith said. “So, when I’m bench pressing and on that last rep that and I feel that I can’t get it up my spotter will say ‘this one’s for Major’ and every time I hear my son’s name, Major, I’ve got to get this one done for him. When he was born, nothing except greatness is acceptable.”

Smith has shown brightness in a dark time for Western. He has one interception and leads the team with nine pass breakups. He is consistently the best player in the secondary for Western, and Smith will have it no other way.

“It’s just consistency. Knowing who I am, knowing what I can do and what I am capable of doing. Always try and be the best, always be hard on yourself, whether it’s a good break or a bad break,” Smith said, who also credited coach Brandon Blackman for continuing this mindset. “I got enhanced into that when Blackman is telling me it’s not good enough. Even if it is good enough, it’s not good enough.”

Despite the high expectations and the need for constant improvement, Smith shrugs the load off like it was a mosquito trying to bite.

“Pressure is when you don’t know what you are doing and I have been doing this a long time, and it’s what I love so it’s no pressure. Even if there was pressure, I’m comfortable with it,” Smith said.

Not only does he manage his expectations well, he sets his expectations for himself high too.

“I’m a playmaker. I am capable of making plays. If the ball is in the air, I want to pick it off, it I can’t it’s going to be a P.B.U. Come to my side, it’s a tackle. I’m an aggressive physical corner,” Smith said.

Now with Western still looking for just one win this year, it’s tough to stay motivated.

“I’m a positive bug,” Smith said. “I am always trying to stay positive; the past is gone you cannot dwell on it. So, I am going to change the future and try and come out on Saturday with a win.”

Marquis loves his teammates, his family and football. Western is glad he chose to play here and the future can only get brighter for this young man.

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