2012 NFL Draft Capsule: SS Harrison Smith

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2012 NFL Draft Capsule: SS Harrison Smith

Harrison Smith (SS), Notre Dame
6-2 214 lbs.
2011 Stats:
90 tackles, 3 TFL, 10 PD, FF

Projection:
Late first-early second round
Strengths:
Smith is very effective when playing downhill inside the box and consistently gets early jumps on the ball, reads and reacts quickly. He generates good power into contact when working in pursuit and uses his strong upper body to wrap up. He's projected as playing a center field type role as an NFL strong safety. (National Football Post)

Weaknesses:
He gets upright and will get overextended with footwork when looking to close in on a ball-carrier. Smith lacks great straight-line speed and struggles to get back up to speed quickly. Scouts say Smith isn't the type of player you want to trust to run with receivers down the field. (National Football Post)

Fit for the Bears:
The Bears are always looking for the perfect fit for the Cover 2 defense, so finding a way to land Smith in the first or second round could be a move they make. The Notre Dame product wont win many foot races, but his balance and instincts have scouts raving about what he may develop into at the pro level. Smith can tackle about as well as any safety in this draft class, but he will need to prove he can continue to elevate his coverage skills.

Wednesday on CSN: Illinois State and Loyola host in Valley doubleheader

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Wednesday on CSN: Illinois State and Loyola host in Valley doubleheader

The Missouri Valley Conference returns to CSN with live college hoops action on Wednesday night.

Looking to make a push for the NCAA tournament, Illinois State hosts Southern Illinois at 6 p.m. live on CSN. Then at 7 p.m. on CSN+, Loyola will host Drake in another Valley contest.

The Redbirds (23-5, 15-1) have won four straight games as they are co-leaders of the conference with Wichita State. Senior Deontae Hawkins leads Illinois State in scoring at 14.6 points per game.

Southern Illinois (15-14, 8-8) won on the road at Indiana State to snap a three-game losing streak as they're hoping for a better result after losing to Illinois State at home by seven earlier this season. Senior point guard Mike Rodriguez leads the Salukis in points and assists at 13.0 points and 4.1 assists per game.

In the second game, Loyola is trying to make a move up the conference standings as they host Drake.

The Ramblers (17-12, 7-9) lost to the Bulldogs on the road earlier this season as they enter this one having lost five of six games. Loyola is led by senior Milton Doyle as he leads the Ramblers in points and assists at 15.6 points and 4.3 assists per contest. 

Drake (7-21, 5-11) has lost seven straight games but they did get the best of the Ramblers in that 102-98 thriller earlier this season. The Bulldogs do have a talented junior in Reed Timmer as he's putting up 15.6 points per game.

Both of these games are important for Missouri Valley Conference tournament seeding purposes as Arch Madness begins on Thursday, March 2.

You can catch Thursday and Friday's MVC Tournament action live on CSN on March 2 and March 3.

Tuesday on CSN+: UIC hosts Green Bay

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Tuesday on CSN+: UIC hosts Green Bay

College hoops returns to CSN on Tuesday with some local action as UIC hosts Green Bay. You can watch this Horizon League matchup live on CSN+ at 7 p.m.

The Flames (14-14, 7-8) are coming off of a loss to Oakland as they try to make one more push up the conference standings. Junior big man Tai Odiase leads UIC at 11.3 points per game as the former Homewood-Flossmoor product is also a solid rim protector.

Green Bay (16-11, 10-5) is still fighting for one of the conference's top spots as they're coming off of a win over Milwaukee. The Phoenix already own a four-point win over UIC this season at home in a close game.

Senior guard Charles Cooper is averaging 13.0 points per game as he's been one of the better guards in the conference this season.