After moving from wide receiver to behind center during the off-season, the senior conquered any challenge thrown in his way. He lined up at quarterback, safety, punter, kick return and occasionally place-kicker.
He succeeded at nearly all of it as he helped Saks reach the Class 3A state semifinals and a 13-1 record, and as a result, he is The Anniston Star's Calhoun County 3A player of the year.
“The thing about Tre that makes him a great player is first his instincts,” Saks coach Jonathan Miller said. “There’s not much on the football that he can’t do because he has a lot of natural talent. Tre also worked hard in the weight room and got strong.”
The 6-foot-0, 185-pound Smith threw for 1,352 yards and 16 touchdowns and rushed for 1,127 yards and 20 touchdowns.
He said playing quarterback was the most fun thing he did in high school football. Miller added that Saks was able to expand its offense partly because of how quickly Smith learned the position.
“After he started picking up things pretty quickly, we started putting more and more on him,” the coach said. “We were able to add a lot of stuff that we didn’t really plan on adding because of how well he picked up the position.
“He learned to play quarterback. He wasn’t just an athlete back there playing -- he was actually a quarterback.”
Smith’s play helped Saks achieve its first 10-0 regular season and later make its first trip to the state semifinals since 1996. The Wildcats also scored 595 points this season, shattering the previous school record.
“Offensively, it really started with our offensive line,” Miller said. “They were probably the most improved group of our team from the previous year. That’s where our offensive success started.
“With Tre settling in at quarterback we were able to get guys like Devin Harris, Darion Coleman and Davontae Young the football out in space. Our pieces just fit together.”
Smith had countless great plays throughout the season – and a 16-minute highlight tape to back it up – but Miller said it’s not a particular play by Smith that stands out to him. Instead it will be the senior’s poise when Saks had to go on the road for the second round and quarterfinals of the playoffs.
“He performed spectacular in crunch time,” Miller said. “There were times in those two games that things didn’t go our way, and I’ll never forget his calmness. I think against Lauderdale County he was 5-for-5 in the fourth quarter with a touchdown and also a rushing touchdown.”
Smith is being recruited by numerous schools, including Murray State, Chattanooga and Austin Peay, mostly for wide receiver than defensive back. Purdue also has shown interest. The senior said he’s still considering all of his option.
Brandon Miller covers prep sports for The Star. He can be reached at 256-235-3575 or follow him on Twitter @bmiller_star