Kevin Smith

Born: April 7, 1970 in Orange, Texas

     Cornerback Kevin Ray Smith graduated from West Orange-Stark High School. At Stark, he not only recorded 12 interceptions but caught nine touchdown passes while playing wide receiver. Smith was a successful baseball player until his sophomore year, when a fastball hit him on the left side of his face.  He was recruited as a wide receiver by the University of Houston and Louisiana State University but chose to play defensive back at Texas A&M. Smith was a big play man throughout his career at A&M.

 

     Called upon to return punts midway through his final college season, he returned one punt 71 yards for a score against Rice and later added a 73-yard touchdown return against Texas. He finished the season sixth in the nation with a 14.7-yard return average. Smith scored six touchdowns and set a SWC record for career interceptions with 20, tied the conference mark for career touchdowns on interceptions with 3 and set A&M career records for interceptions, return yards (289) and passes defeated (32). Smith missed only one game in his four years at the school and started 38 straight games. He earned consensus All-American in 1991 and was a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award, given to the nation's best defensive back. He was an All-SWC selection for three straight years. During his years on the team, the Aggies played in three bowl games, and the team won the conference title in 1991.

 

     The No. 1 draft pick by the Dallas Cowboys in 1992, Smith took just 10 games to crack the starting lineup as a rookie cornerback. He played in the NFC Championship Game and two weeks later was one of two Cowboys Rookies starting on the victorious Dallas defensive unit in Super Bowl XXVII. That year, he was the Cowboys' youngest player on the roster at 21. In the nine games that he started in 1992 (including the playoffs), Smith registered 36 tackles, seven passes defensed, two interceptions, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery. In the championship game, he collected a career-high 8 tackles (7 solos), while returning a fumble recovery 11 yards. He teamed with Larry Brown to form the youngest set of starting cornerbacks in the NFL. Smith retired from football in 2000 after a knee injury during training camp.