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Thursday, December 30, 2010
Coppell's Devin Smith at home at Rose Bowl

By Jeff Caplan

LOS ANGELES -- Wisconsin Badgers cornerback Devin Smith is from Coppell, but Pasadena, Calif., is like his second home.

"I would come here in the summer and stay with my uncle since I was about 6 years old," Smith said. "He would always work out every morning, and he would always take me to the Rose Bowl and we would do a three-mile jog around the entire Rose Bowl.

"He would say this could be you one day. I didn’t believe it at first, and now it’s become reality."

Smith, one of five Wisconsin defensive backs that hails from DFW, will play in his first Rose Bowl as the Big Ten co-champion Badgers take on the TCU Horned Frogs on Saturday afternoon.

Smith is a junior and backs up senior Niles Brinkley. The 5-foot-11, 185-pound Smith ranks 10th on the team in tackles and has one interception.

He was only lightly recruited by TCU, he said, along with some interest from Texas and Texas A&M, but he said he's not surprised to see the Frogs in the Rose Bowl.

"If it was a couple of years ago I would have been surprised," Smith said. "But as the program became better, they’ve become a more well-known team and they definitely deserve to be here."