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September 30, 2008

Penn State adds No. 18

Just one day after adding a verbal commitment from linebacker Glenn Carson, the Nittany Lions received the same good news from Waldorf (Md.) Westlake athlete Devon Smith.

Smith, a 5-foot-7, 153-pound projected wide receiver, verbally committed to the Nittany Lions on Tuesday.

"Yesterday I told my coach how I felt, and I made a pros and cons sheet for him," said Smith. "I had no cons about Penn State. I just gave him a little talk about how I felt about Penn State. He just said we were going to have a little meeting and talk about it. We had our meeting, and I called Larry Johnson this morning around 10:00, and committed to Penn State.

"I thought to myself that I have a chance of playing my first or second year, because they're losing three big starting receivers, like Derrick Williams, (Jordan) Norwood and Deon Butler, so I thought I could really play soon and be a big player at Penn State."

The three-star prospect took an official visit to Happy Valley this weekend, and said that the trip cleared up any questions about where he wants to play his college ball.

"It really didn't have a lot to do with my decision, because the game was hyped up, but had some to do with my decision," said Smith. "That was a great experience for me. I've never seen anything like that for my life. It was exciting for me, and a great experience for me and my family."

Smith brings the Nittany Lions class a heavy dose of speed. He posted a 10.59 FAT 100 time in the preliminary round of the USA Junior Olympic Trials, held at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on the campus of Ohio State University in late June. He posted a 10.68 in the finals, earning sixth place.

Smith is rated as the No. 97 athlete in the country, according to Rivals.com. He is also considered the fastest athlete in the country.

He was recruited for the Nittany Lions by Larry Johnson, Sr.

This season, Smith has the Wolverines out to a 4-0 start. He has carried the ball 27 times for 485 yards and four touchdowns. He has also caught five passes for 85 yards and a touchdown.

As a return man, he has brought back four punts for a total of 99 yards, and two kickoffs for 118 yards, including a 90-yard touchdown.

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