If Earvin "Una" Smiley is able to play college football, it
apparently will be at Oregon State.
Smiley, a 6-foot-6, 280-pound offensive lineman from Honolulu
who was shot while on a recruiting visit to the University of New
Mexico late last year, signed a national letter of intent with the
Pac-10 school Wednesday.
Smiley played at Palomar College in southern California last
year. He was shot in the right leg while leaving an Albuquerque
strip club on Dec. 9 with three New Mexico players and sustained
severe nerve damage.
Smiley is awaiting surgery and doesn't know yet if he'll be able
to ever walk normally or play football game.
The Albuquerque Tribune reported Thursday that Smiley was told
by Oregon State coaches he could take a redshirt year to undergo
"At first, the Oregon State coaches were just going to wait and
see how I recovered after the surgery, but they changed their mind
when it was taking so long for me to have the surgery," Smiley
told the newspaper. "There is still a chance I may not be able to
play, so they are taking a bit of a risk."
Smiley suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the legs. Police said
the shooting followed an exchange between Smiley and two men and
two women at the club.
Police made an arrest in the case and charged 26-year-old
Erminio Gonzalez with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon,
aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and shooting at or from a
New Mexico coach Rocky Long said Wednesday he did not think the
shooting incident involving Smiley had any impact on the Lobos'