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Aggies WR Ainias Smith Drawing Inspiration from 49ers Star Deebo Samuel

Smith's versatility could give A&M the edge it needs to make the College Football Playoff

Aggies receiver Ainias Smith was one of the highlights of an A&M passing attack that struggled with consistency and big-play production. The Aggies were third-worst in the SEC in passing yards per game (208.6) and had the second-fewest yards (2,503).

And despite the departure of offensive players like Isaiah Spiller, Demarvin Leal, Jalen Wydermyer, and Kenyon Green to the draft, Smith elected to return to College Station for his senior season. 

But after speaking to the media Tuesday, it's clear he isn't taking his eyes off a potential NFL future, with one emerging superstar supplying Smith with the inspiration he'll use during his final season of college ball. 

Ainias Smith Returns

49ers receiver Deebo Samuel caught Smith's eye after taking the league by storm this season with his ability to dominate in the passing game and between the tackles. Samuel was fifth in the league in receiving yards (1,405) while totaling 59 carries for 365 yards and eight scores on the ground. 

"I actually want to give a shout-out and appreciation to Deebo Samuel," Smith said. "It’s not very easy for anybody to do that on the next level. For him to be able to do that so well, it just really shows that people like me out there can be valued. It’s definitely an opportunity that he’s opened up not only for myself, but other people under me.” 

Samuel's rise to stardom sets a new standard for how players can be utilized in an offensive scheme. Players like Smith, who had 64 carries for 373 yards and four rushing scores during his time as an Aggie. He's ready for whatever else A&M coach Jimbo Fisher asks of him this season. 

deebo samuel

“Jimbo is just trying to find a way to get me the ball, whether that’s at back, receiver, quarterback, tight end," Smith said. "It doesn’t really matter, I'm there trying to eat and I feel like he gonna feed me.”

Smith's role in the backfield fell off a bit this past season, but this was due to the emergence of Isaiah Spiller and the need for skill in the slot as a receiver. Smith only had eight carries for 26 yards but led the Aggies in catches (47) and touchdowns (six) while having the second-most receiving yards (509).

Now as one of the Aggies' bonafide offensive leaders, Smith will aim to maximize his versatility with a 2022 recruiting class that is arguably the best in program history. 

Ainias Smith

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