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USC senior linebacker Cameron Smith signs with sports agency

Set to start preparing for the 2019 NFL Draft, USC captain signs with Athletes First.

NCAA Football: California at Southern California Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

It is that time of the year when beloved seniors say their last goodbyes to the college football world and start preparing for their professional football careers. USC Trojans captain Cameron Smith is the first to announce the next step in his football journey.

On Monday, USC senior Cameron Smith announced via Instagram that he will be signing with Athletes First, one of the biggest sports agencies in the world. Athletes First also represents fellow Trojan linebacker Clay Matthews.

@camusc35 via Instagram

Smith will go down as one of USC’s most heralded leaders. A four-star recruit out of Granite Bay, California, he was part of USC’s signing class of 2015 after committing to the Trojans over schools such as Louisville, Oregon, UCLA, and Wisconsin.

Fans quickly got to know the inside linebacker during his freshman season, when the Trojans knocked off a No. 3 in the nation Utah Utes team. Smith had three interceptions, one of which he ran back for a touchdown during USC’s upset of Utah in the Coliseum.

From then on, Smith was a key component in USC’s defense and proved himself to be a true Trojan leader. He ended his freshman campaign with 78 total tackles, only second behind Su’a Cravens. Smith was USC’s leading tackler in 2016 with 83, 2017 with 112, and 2018 with 81 total tackles. After many assumed he would declare for the 2018 NFL Draft, Smith returned to USC for one last ride.

A captain and arguably USC’s most consistent player, he will be sorely missed in 2019 but will no doubt have a stellar NFL career. Smith is likely to be selected as an All-American and is projected to be a first round draft pick.