Matt Smith To Chat On ESPN.com

Nov. 14, 2000

Enter Chat Room

EUGENE, Ore. - On Thursday, Oregon senior linebacker Matt Smith will make a special visit to the ESPN.com moderated chat room to talk about his fifth-ranked Ducks and the upcoming 'Civil War' with rival Oregon State.

Even when he was a farmhand with the Kansas City Royals, Matt Smith was still a Duck. His brother was a Duck, his father and grandfather were both Ducks. In fact, Matt Smith doesn't have a single Oregon State Beaver in the family.

So it's no surprise that after his baseball career didn't pan out, the Butkus Trophy finalist ended up playing football for the University of Oregon. Smith, now a 24-year-old senior linebacker, leads the Ducks in tackles with 78 and interceptions with four.

'All my family has gone to the University of Oregon,' said Smith, who grew up watching the Civil War from Grants Pass, the southern Oregon town on the rugged Rogue River that is home to some of the nation's best whitewater rafting. 'For as long as I can remember, I followed Oregon. And the Civil War, beating Oregon State, has always been a part of that.'

Smith has turned in some mighty impressive games and big plays this season. He batted down Marcus Tuiasosopo's fourth-down pass (after an earlier interception) to preserve the win over Washington. He had a team-high 13 tackles and a fumble recovery in the double-overtime win at Arizona State. And he had a 47-yard interception return for a touchdown at Wisconsin. But all his big games and big plays would mean nothing if the Ducks lose to the Beavers on Saturday.

Smith won't be stopping by until 1:00 p.m. PT Thursday, but feel free to leave your questions now and we will save them for his arrival!

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