Photo by John Nakano

Adam Smith is a graduate transfer student who began his playing career at UNC Wilmington and spent the previous two years at in-conference rival Virginia Tech. He has made a career out of scoring three pointers and is currently at the top of the ACC and No. 12 nationally with 70 of them this year. He is also the second highest scorer on the team and is a force on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. He spoke with the Technique earlier this week to share his thoughts on the team and
his career.

Technique: This is now the third school that you have played for. What are some differences that you have noticed in the teams’ playstyles?

Smith: They each have a different pace, different coaching staff and different teams, really. Everything has been pretty different over the three schools I’ve been to. I think playing for a variety of schools and a variety of coaches, you kind of learn to be more versatile.”

Technique: Does Tech play at a faster pace compared to the other schools?

Smith: When I was at Wilmington, it was a slower pace; we played a half-court game. I played for two coaches at Virginia Tech. Last year we played really fast. This year we kind of have both styles. We can get up and down the court and we can also play in the half court set.

Technique: Why did you choose Tech for your final season of eligibility?

Smith: Of course, they had the Master’s program that I was looking for, [Music Technology]. Also, being back home close to family and friends helped, along with [head] coach [Brian] Gregory and his staff.

Technique: Now that you have been here for a few semesters, how are you enjoying the student life?

Smith: It’s been all right. I guess being a grad student is different than being an undergraduate. I spend most of my time in just one building, the Couch Building, which is the music technology building. Outside of that I don’t party much; I really just hang with teammates. I might go to some of the concerts around here, and I guess that’s been the highlight of the student life here for me.

Technique: How much did your experience at Virginia Tech help the team this year in your game against them?

Smith: Personnel wise, I was really familiar with everyone; I knew their strengths and weaknesses. But as a team, maybe [we knew] just as much as if I didn’t go there. We scouted them, and coach Gregory has coached against them for all four years that he’s been here. So I think it helped somewhat.

Technique: The team is 2-5 in conference play, but the majority of losses have been close. Can the team learn something from those losses to help them moving forward?

Smith: Yeah, we really just have to close out games. You have to make plays going down the stretch on the offensive and defensive ends and just dig down deep. Sometimes when you think it’s enough, it’s just not enough, and you have to go that extra step and make that push.

Technique: You lead the ACC in three-pointers. What would you say is the biggest reason for your success?

Smith: It’s just about consistency: staying in the gym, working and putting up shots, day
in and day out, keeping up your confidence.

Technique: How many threes do you take in a typical practice?

Smith: In a typical practice, I’m actually not sure; maybe a hundred. But outside of practice I make sure I get up enough shots to keep my rhythm and stay consistent. I try to be in the gym at least twice a day.

Technique: Do you expect to keep up this scoring pace through the end of the year?

Smith: Hopefully. Whatever it takes for us to win games.

Technique: How would you describe your role on the team?

Smith: I’m a leader, an offensive threat, and I bring energy on the offensive and defensive end. That’s the big word: energy.

Technique: Looking ahead, do you think this team can make it to the NCAA Tournament?

Smith: Absolutely. We have the talent, size, quickness, speed, experience, and we just have to put that all together.