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Geno Smith Subject of Gruden's QB Camp

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MORGANTOWN -

Since just about everyone has an opinion on Geno Smith and the other quarterbacks entering this year's NFL Draft, why not find out what a former league head coach has to say about the West Virginia signal caller?

Jon Gruden, once the coach of the Oakland Raiders and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, will sit down with Smith for the latest edition of his television segment, Gruden's QB Camp.

Now a commentator with ESPN, Gruden has been taking the field with quarterbacks for years and since getting his start on the air, he's showing what it's like to work with him behind the scenes.

Smith is the next subject of the segment and will get the opportunity to do some film work and go over the Xs and Os on a whiteboard before ultimately getting out in the open air and throwing a few passes under Gruden's watchful eye.

The Mountaineer quarterback will be the first actual QB in Gruden's QB Camp this year as the premiere featured Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o. In all, ESPN will air 12 different player features leading up to the NFL Draft, which begins on Thursday, April 25 in New York City.

This will not be the first time Smith has been scrutinized by a former NFL head coach while the cameras are rolling. During the NFL Network's coverage of February's NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Smith did an interview and some classroom work with Steve Mariucci, formerly of San Francisco and Detroit.

"It was a great experience," Smith said of working with the two coaches. "Jon's a great guy, Steve's a great guy. Both are – you can tell they drink a lot of caffeine, but that's a typical coach."

Working under WVU's Dana Holgorsen, a coach with a reputation for throwing back a few Red Bulls during practice, likely prepared Smith for that.

In the past, some quarterbacks come out looking better based on their televised evaluation than others. Smith is hopeful that his will bode well for his future, but he knows that just getting the experience may be beneficial in the long run.

"Those two guys are extremely knowledgeable and they did a great job with me as far as making me feel comfortable," he said. "We joked around off set a little bit, got some good food, were able to just hang out, but on set, you could tell they've done it before. I was just an amateur, so I was kind of caught in the moment."

Among the questions Mariucci posed to Smith was what the drug of choice on WVU's campus was, to which Smith replied that he had no idea. More conventional questions, like why a team should draft him, were met with more thought out answers.

"When you draft me, I'm coming in with the same mentality as I would if I was the last pick in the draft and that's to have a chip on my shoulder and to work as hard as I can to be the franchise guy," Smith told Mariucci. "From day one, I'm going to do everything possible to win over my teammates, to win over that organization, to be a character guy, a man that's going to represent the organization and be the face of the organization at the very same time."

Smith's segment with Gruden will premiere Thursday, April 4 at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN and will be shown multiple times thereafter all the way up through the draft.

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