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Rounding the Mats with Justin Smith

December 1, 2009
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Liberty's Justin Smith

Liberty's Justin Smith

Having joined 15 other newcomers to Liberty's 2009-10 wrestling roster, Justin Smith is currently in his first year with the Flames program, where he will be looking to help Liberty capture their fourth-straight NCAA East Regional title in March.

Smith comes to Liberty after a four-year letterwinning career at Franklin County High School in Rocky Mount, Va., where he wrestled in weight classes ranging from 112 pounds up to 140/145 pounds as a senior.

Smith was a district champion at 130 pounds and state Judo champion as a junior, while repeating both honors during his senior year, despite wrestling up at 145 pounds.

Justin Smith
Fr., 5-7
149 pounds
Boones Mill, Va.
Franklin County High School

Click here to view his full bio

What is your favorite Bible verse and why?
I Peter 5:8-11, especially verses 10 and 11, because these two verses sum up my life.

What are your Top 5 movies you have seen in the past year … old or new movies?
Transformers 2, G.I. Joe and Yes Man

What are you favorite snack foods?
Fruit smiles and trail mix

In your opinion, why should a fan come see a Liberty wrestling home dual/event this season?
We train harder and demand more from our bodies than any other sport, plus we are intense and we enjoy it.

If you were going to be stranded on a desert island, what five items would you want to have with you?
Bible, water filtering system, my Ka-bar knife, a tent and a sleeping bag

Which member of the coaching staff/administrative staff has been the most helpful for you during your time at Liberty?
Coach Jesse Castro, because he allowed me to be a part of the Virginia Gold Club, and being a part of that team helped me find a love for what I do.

What is one thing you would like to accomplish within the first five years after graduating from Liberty?
I want to be able to buy a house with a good amount of land, have most of college paid and have a successful and fun career that enables me to do what I want to do.

If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be?
I would want to visit Ireland, because of the weather and the amazing scenery.

If you could choose a personal vehicle that best fits your personality, what would it be?
A Dodge Ram 1500 4x4, off road with 5.7L Hemi, perfectly black or dark blue

What was your favorite television show growing up as a child?
The Fresh Prince of Bel Air

What is your favorite memory from your high school days?
It was senior night at a home football game, where my friends and I painted our chests to root for our school and the temperature was 22 degrees.

Who do you admire most in life and what unique characteristics do you admire about that person?
My friend, Josh Mason, has continued to overcome every obstacle in front of him and still empower and encourage others. He has never let me down and he's always put 100 percent into whatever he has done.

When someone looks back at your life, how do you want to be remembered?
I want to be remembered for always helping people and being a hard worker.

If you could go back and speak at your high school for 10 minutes, what would your speech be about?
I did not care about my academics back in high school, so I would encourage people to do their utmost, for their own benefit, in every aspect of their lives.

What is the one thing you have already learned at Liberty or hope to learn before you graduate that you feel best prepares you for life after college?
I've learned that life is not fair and making mistakes is a learning experience. However, as a Christian, I'm not called to go the easy road or to cut corners. I'm called to do the impossible and that is awesome to me.

If you are stuck inside all day because of the weather, what activity best fills your time?
My devotions, watch movies and take a nap

After the season is complete, what is one thing you hope you can say about your personal development as a player that has taken place this year?
I hope that I am a regional qualifier. But more importantly, every day I want to become mentally tougher and to never show a fault in my positioning.

What would you call yourself if you could choose your own name?
I would want to change my name to Caleb, because the New Testament talks about his faith and his ability to defeat giants, despite his older age. I love that story and I want to lead others to do the same.

I came to Liberty because …
I wanted to glorify God through wrestling. I did not realize how God was going to use me and what He had in store for me. All I knew was how much I wanted to go along for the ride.

Words that describe me on the athletic field (and why) are …
Technical and always in superb condition

Name three athletes who participate in your sport (both past and present) who you would like to compete against and list why you would like to compete against them.
Frank Gotch, Cael Sanderson and Darrion Caldwell, because they have each broken barriers in the sport of wrestling.

What is one thing that is unique about you or sets you apart from others?
My outlook on life is unique and I've always known what I've wanted to do. I'm very headstrong and once I set out on a goal, I don't stray from it.

What sets wrestling apart as a sport and makes it appealing to you?
We run as much as the cross country team, we swim and we do everything with more intensity than every other team on campus. We receive no patches on our sleeves for doing it. Wrestling is more of a mental sport than physical and that is why I love it so much.

Previous Rounding the Mat Segments: 
Nick Knowles – Nov. 17
Logan Crawford - Nov. 19
Scott Clymer - Nov. 24