College Sports

HBCU Voice: NC Central’s Ryan Smith on being drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers


With the 108th pick of the NFL draft, the Tampa Buccaneers selected former N.C. Central defensive back Ryan Smith.

The 5-foot-11, 187 pound Smith is the first Eagle selected since 2007. Smith came to NC Central having only played one year of high school football and switched from safety to cornerback before his junior year. He set school record for career solo tackles with 168 and recorded seven interceptions and 24 pass breakups.

In the two games N.C. Central played against FBS level competition last year – Duke and Florida International – Smith had two passes defensed on just six targets, according to Pro Football Focus. His draft stock went up after the NFL combine and his pro day.

Host Jonathan Alexander and panelists Aaron Saunders, Jerome Brown Jr. and Trent Little ask Ryan Smith about being drafted, his time in college, his thoughts on the Celebration Bowl and more.

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Jonathan M. Alexander: 919-829-4822, @jonmalexander1