AUBURN | Better late than never.
Auburn wasn't the first school to recruit or offer Olathe (Kan.) Rivals100 offensive guard Braden Smith, but they ultimately made the best impression, as Smith committed to Auburn during a ceremony at Olathe High School on Wednesday morning.
The 6-foot-3, 275-pound Smith chose Auburn over finalists TCU and Texas A&M. Smith is an Under Armour All-American, the nation's No. 3 guard and No. 50 overall prospect.
"The reason I chose Auburn is because of the great opportunity now that Greg Robinson left for the NFL," he said Wednesday morning. "It gave me … a chance to play early. Of course, the style of offense they run is very similar to ours. I think I'll be able to pick it up pretty fast. And I love all the coaches there."
Smith's commitment gives Auburn their third Rivals100 commitment for the 2014 class with the decision of Rashaan Evans still to come. Smith will be the first Rivals100 offensive line signee for Auburn since Avery Young inked with the Tigers in 2012.
Auburn was patient in their hunt for a talented and physical offensive lineman that fit their offensive system and they found what they were looking for in Smith. The Tigers offered in November, turned up the heat with visits from offensive line coach J.B. Grimes and secured an official visit in January - a visit Smith switched from a previously scheduled trip to Notre Dame. Smith visited Texas A&M and TCU in the following weeks, but the visits weren't enough to knock off the Tigers.
Smith's sister is a junior at TCU and competes for the Horned Frogs track and field team.
Grimes was Smith's lead recruiter.
Stay tuned to AuburnSports.com for more on Smith's decision.