B.J. Smith carves out legacy with special season

Published 11:15 pm Friday, December 21, 2018

When Troy running back B.J. Smith and the Trojans entered the season, Smith was looked at as a solid piece in the Troy backfield. By season’s end, Smith became the 10th Trojan player in history to rush for more than 1,000 yards and the true leader in the backfield.

Smith has rushed for a total of 1,093 yards so far this season with the bowl game still to be played.

“I have grown a lot and I have matured a lot,” Smith said. “You can see that with how I act. I pay a big credit to my teammates.”

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Smith finished with 12 rushing touchdowns on the season, second most in the Sun Belt Conference and first among running backs. Smith eclipsed the 1,000 mark on senior day in a win over Texas State. Two months later, the feat has yet to sink in for the junior ball carrier.

“No, it still hasn’t really hit me yet,” Smith said. “It’s a tremendous blessing.”

Smith came into the season looking to get the bulk of the carries after Jordan Chunn and Josh Anderson departed. Smith, Jabir Daughtry-Frye and Jamiarius Henderson, who is no longer with the program, all vied for the top spot. By season’s end, it was Smith in a landslide.

“My coaches and my teammates had faith in me,” Smith said. “At the same time, I don’t think many outsiders knew (about me). They believed in me 100 percent. It was a team effort. I couldn’t have done any of this on my own. Big credit to my teammates.”

Smith will have one final chance to make a mark on this season when the Trojans take on Buffalo on Saturday in the Dollar General Bowl in Mobile. Smith hopes to end the season on a high note with a win.

“Like they tell us all the time, it’s hard to win,” Smith said. “If we can do it 10 times in a season, that’s pretty good. That’s an accomplishment. That is something that no one (in program history) has ever done before.”

Smith and the Trojans will kick off the Dollar General Bowl at 6 p.m.