A three-time Division I-AA All-American defensive lineman, Giff Smith enters his fifth season as Tulane's defensive line coach while 2003 will be his third season as the Wave's recruiting coordinator and associate head coach.
As recruiting coordinator, Smith led the effort as Tulane signed three of its top classes in several years over the last three seasons. Eleven members of the 2002 signing class lettered for the Green Wave in 2002.
Smith, a 1991 graduate of Georgia Southern, was a member of three I-AA national championship teams at the school (1986, 1989 and 1990) as a defensive end.
The 1989 team posted a 15-0 record on its way to the title, becoming the first GSU team to finish with a perfect record. Smith served as team captain in his senior season of 1990 and was named the NCAA I-AA Defensive Player of the Year. A native of Mableton, Ga., Smith spent five seasons in the Southeastern Conference working with defensive linemen. He began his coaching career in 1991 at Arkansas as a graduate assistant and was on staff when UA was selected to the Independence Bowl that year.
After three years with the Razorbacks, Smith served two seasons as a staff assistant at Georgia, helping the Bulldogs to the 1995 Peach Bowl.
Smith returned to his alma mater in 1996 as wide receivers coach. The next season, Smith moved back to defense, coaching the Eagles' secondary. In that role, he helped the Eagles to a pair of Southern Conference titles, in 1997 and 1998. Georgia Southern advanced to the 1998 I-AA National Championship game.
There are presently six players whom he tutored, including Jason Ferguson (N.Y. Jets), Henry Ford (Tennessee), Raylee Johnson (San Diego), Phillip Daniels (Chicago), Kiwaukee Thomas (Jacksonville) and Earthwind Moreland (Cleveland) in the NFL. In addition, Tulane's all-time sack leader, Kenan Blackmon, signed a free agent contract with the New York Jets in the spring.
Smith, 34, was inducted into the Georgia Southern University Athletic Hall of Fame in 2000.
Birthdate: Oct. 23, 1968
Birthplace: Atlanta, GA
Hometown: Mableton, GA
High School: Pebblebrook (GA) HS (1986)
College: Georgia Southern (1991)
Georgia Southern (1986-90)