Dec. 3, 2011
Dec. 3, 2011
Head coach's weekly press conference transcript
CSU vs. San Diego State
Colorado State vs. UNLV Photo Gallery
CSU football vs. San Jose State - 10-1-11
Colorado State vs. New Mexico
Photos from Colorado State's game against Utah
Colorado State vs. Air Force Oct. 9, 2010
2011 (Senior): A veteran leader in the Rams' secondary, shifted from safety to his natural cornerback position prior to spring practice, and played in seven games, with six starts, before undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery...Finished his career with 24 tackles (17 solo), ½ tackle for loss and a pair of pass breakups...In season-opening win at New Mexico (Sept. 3), saw his first game action at cornerback since high school...In home-opening win over Northern Colorado (Sept. 10), combined on a tackle for loss...In Denver loss vs. Colorado (Sept. 17), had blanket coverage on Toney Clemons to prevent a deep reception down the right sideline late in the first half...In exhilarating win at Utah State (Sept. 24), appeared to make a game-winning play in the second of two overtime periods, preventing a reception on USU's attempt at a go-ahead two-point conversion; was mistakenly called for pass interference after replays showed the ball was tipped at the line of scrimmage, giving the Aggies a second shot at the win, but teammate Momo Thomas came through with the game-saving tackle...Two possessions earlier against USU, batted away a pass that could've helped the Aggies move into position to attempt a game-winning field goal in the final minute of regulation...Late in third quarter of 38-31 loss vs. San Jose State (Oct. 1), his secure tackle on a third-down reception forced a punt in a one-score game...Had started 12 straight games until a shoulder injury forced him from the lineup in loss at UTEP (Oct. 22); still played most of game...Sat out following week in loss at UNLV (Oct. 29), missing a game for the first time since Oct. 2, 2010, vs. TCU; shoulder injury snapped a 14-game playing streak, and prior to the Rebels contest had played in 39 of previous 40 games...Opted to prematurely end his career after fighting through overwhelming shoulder pain throughout the season, and underwent surgery Nov. 30.
2010 (Junior): The Rams' starting free safety, a converted cornerback, played in 11 games (nine starts)...Finished with 42 stops (26 solo), two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble...In season opener vs. Colorado (Sept. 4) at Invesco Field, wasted no time delivering one of his now-signature hits, crushing Kyle Cefalo in the third quarter to set up a third-and-long...At Nevada (Sept. 11), chased down RB Vai Taua to save a first-quarter TD, then sustained a shoulder injury and missed most of the second half...Saw his 14-game starting streak end the following week, at Miami-Ohio (Sept. 18); sat out the first quarter but entered at FS on the first snap of Quarter 2...In RedHawks contest, missed his first start since the 2008 New Mexico Bowl, when the bowl berth allowed an injured Jake Galusha enough healing time to return to the lineup...In win vs. Idaho (Sept. 25), made a TD-saving tackle early in the second half...Sustained a muscle strain in his lower extremities against Vandals and did not play vs. No. 5 TCU (Oct. 2), missing the first game of his college career, snapping a 26-game playing streak...Did not start at No. 25 Air Force (Oct. 9), but entered late in the first quarter and played the remainder of the game...Returned to the lineup in big win vs. UNLV (Oct. 16), posting seven tackles, including a TD-saver in the third quarter...At No. 9 Utah (Oct. 23), ripped the ball out of the hands of RB Shawn Asiata, high into the air and out of bounds on a second-quarter run...At SDSU (Nov. 6), helped limit the MW's leading passer, Ryan Lindley, to a season-low 171 yards, as the Rams blanked the league's leading two receivers, DeMarco Sampson and Vincent Brown, over the game's first two quarters; in the third quarter, one play before Mychal Sisson returned a fumble 88 yards for a CSUTD, broke up a pass in the end zone, then recovered a Ronnie Hillman fumble with 5:48 left in the game, setting up a CSU TD that brought the Rams within one score, 24-19...In loss vs. BYU (Nov. 13), recovered his second fumble in as many games, covering a Cody Hoffman fumble at the Rams' 25 to end the first drive.
2009 (Sophomore): Started all 12 games at free safety...Finished second on the team in both tackles, with 74 (42 solo), and interceptions, with three...Also broke up five passes, recovered a fumble and forced another...Stood out in resounding 23-17 win at Colorado (Sept. 6), quickly establishing himself as a big hitter with a knack for making timely, game-changing plays...Picked off his first career pass, intercepting Cody Hawkins midway through the first quarter, thanks to a tip assist from teammate DeAngelo Wilkinson...Then, with the Buffs threatening to pull within a FG midway through the third quarter, absolutely leveled WR Scotty McKnight, forcing a fumble recovered by CSU's Alex Williams (officials initially ruled down by contact, but replay revealed the fumble and subsequent turnover)...In 24-23 win vs. Weber State (Sept. 12), intercepted his second pass in as many games...In assertive 35-20 win vs. Nevada (Sept. 19), picked off a pass for a third straight game, extending one of the longest streaks in CSU history; ended a third-quarter drive in the Rams' end zone, tight-roping the end line after his momentum carried him backward, then brought the ball back to the CSU 21...Broke up a sure TD early in bitter 31-29 loss at Idaho (Oct. 3), several snaps before an Oppenneer interception ended the drive; later, scooped up a blocked PAT and returned it 75 yards for what would've been two points if not for an offsides penalty, then broke up a pass at his own 10-yard line late in the first half...In loss at No. 8 TCU (Oct. 17), calmly fielded an Ed Wesley fumble forced by Mychal Sisson, and returned it 28 yards to set up a FG that gave CSU a 6-0 lead; later, delivered one of his signature hits, separating WR Jeremy Kurley from a pass inside the Rams' 5-yard line...In heartbreaking last-second loss at New Mexico (Nov. 21), had a career-high 11 tackles; broke up a pass with only a minute remaining and CSU up by one, forcing a fourth-down attempt.
2008 (Freshman): Played in 10 games, including the New Mexico Bowl (Dec. 20), with three starts...Compiled 36 tackles (24 solo), with three stops for loss, one sack, one pass broken up, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble...Injured his foot at the first spring practice, then after rehabilitating the injury all summer, aggravated it on the eve of fall camp...Began practicing with the team soon after the first game and made his college debut in Game 4 at Cal (Sept. 27), on special teams...Converted from CB to safety after Klint Kubiak's Game 5 injury and played well as reserve in conference win at SDSU (Oct. 25)...Made his first career start, in crushing 45-42 loss vs. No. 17 BYU (Nov. 1); replaced Mike Pagnotta (shoulder) in the lineup and registered nine tackles, including a sack (Max Hall) and two stops for loss...At Air Force (Nov. 8), did not start but played the full game after returning starter Kubiak injured his knee on the day's first play...Rejoined the lineup in win vs. New Mexico (Nov. 15); late in the game, crushed the Lobos' Roland Bruno on the Rams' 5-yard line, separating him from the ball...In win at Wyoming (Nov. 22) that made CSU bowl eligible, recovered Devin Moore's second-quarter fumble, then with CSU protecting a 24-20 lead in the fourth quarter, forced a Wynel Seldon fumble recovered by teammate Wade Landers, to set up a game-clinching drive.
High School: A standout at Crenshaw High School in Los Angeles, Calif., received the Scholar Athlete award from the National Football Foundation...Named football MVP in 2005 and team captain in `06...A two-time all-league and two-time all-city honoree...Helped lead the Cougars to both a league and city championship in 2005...Played FB, LB and S...Lettered in two sports, including track (100, 200 meters)...Named to the honor roll...High school football coach was Robert Garrett.
Personal: Given name Elijah-Blu Norris Smith...Born Dec. 23, 1988, in Los Angeles, Calif. ...Son of Norris Smith and his wife, Deborah...His birth mother, Sonia, passed away when he was 8...Has one brother and two sisters...Met senior citizens at the North Shore Health and Rehab Facility to spread goodwill, take some photos and share a few laughs before the '10 season...For a week in 2010, helped struggling students with reading at Tavelli Elementary in Fort Collins...Made a couple appearances at the Centre Avenue Health & Rehab Facility in Fort Collins, working social events with patients, in February 2011...Spent time with less-fortunate kids in 2011, assisting with summer programs at the Harmony Mobile Home Park...Majoring in liberal arts...Hometown: Los Angeles, Calif.