"As far as Geno and myself, for us to do a good job in this game, it might pretty much put him on top for the Heisman race next year, and for myself, the Biletnikoff Award. That's something I want to try and accomplish, winning that."
No. 14 Clemson (10-3) knows that if it is going to win in its first Orange Bowl appearance in 30 years, Smith is the player the Tigers must fluster.
"He's very athletic," veteran Clemson defensive coordinator Kevin Steele said when asked about Smith on Monday. "He does a really, really good job, and (Steele's reference) goes back having played against this offense at Kentucky and then Oklahoma, Texas Tech, now. I mean, it's not the first time you've seen different (style) quarterbacks.
"He does a great job at what we call catch-and-throw. He's got good field vision because when you're in the gun all the time, people don't realize when you're underneath the center you've got your eyes down the field, so you take the snap and you're seeing what's there.
"You know there's middle-of-the-field coverage; your eyes are always downfield. But when you're in the gun all the time, at some point in time you've got to watch the ball into your hands. It's kind of hard to catch that ball because you kind of see it go around the clock in terms of where it's at."
Steele is impressed with Smith's versatility in the position.
"He does a great job of getting the ball caught (into his own hands) and getting his eyes on his reads and then getting the ball out very quick," the Clemson coordinator said. "And then he's very accurate with his throws ... very accurate with his throws. He has the ability to scramble.
"I've known him since he was in high school, so I know what he can do with his legs. But he really does (scramble). He's more of an NFL style, and then he scrambles to throw. He's going to look to throw it first, and as soon as I say that, then he'll scramble for 80 yards (tonight), but he does scramble to throw."
Smith rewrote school and Big East record books this season, but he said he doesn't "think that's as meaningful as being here ... to know we won enough games, we've done enough this season to make it to a BCS bowl.
"Individual records are kind of selfish, I think. I don't go out and shoot for those because I think a win is way more important than any statistics I can gain. "It's more important for my family to have my name written down, and I'm proud of it, but I'm not that type of guy. I'm more about 'team.'"
The WVU quarterback also didn't hesitate when asked what he hadn't done this season that he wanted to do.
"A lot, man," said Smith, who enters the Orange Bowl 314-of-483 passing (.650), for 3,978 yards, 25 touchdowns and seven interceptions. "I left a lot of yards out there, a lot of touchdowns.
"I think a lot of that is because I've been overly coaching myself at times, and it's affected me in a way, but it's also helped me because I've learned you've got to be consistent. That's something I'm working on every day."
Smith, for his part, said he is just trying to savor the here and now, the most special game of his career to date, and not just because it's a BCS game.
"It's a great experience," Smith of his homecoming bowl. "Everyone (in his the stadium-side neighborhood) who ever wanted to see me play at West Virginia, they get their chance now. It is a great experience to be here in my backyard.
"I grew up right behind Sun Life Stadium and it is going to be fun for me and my family and my teammates. The Orange Bowl is such a prestigious game and we get a chance to represent our state and our university in this game. We get a chance to play a good team in Clemson.
"I grew up close to the stadium and it is kind of ironic. I actually used to watch games on the Jumbotron sitting outside of my house and now I am playing in the stadium.
"I never imagined it happening like this - it is kind of a storybook game for me. It is here now and I have a great opportunity. I am just trying to live in the moment."
If Smith puts up numbers tonight, "storybook" could have even more definitions for the West Virginia quarterback.
Contact Sports Editor Jack Bogaczyk at ja...@dailymail.com or 304-348-7949.