Floyd Central senior Brendon Smith likes to listen to the classic music hits on vinyl. On his swimming team, he is an “oldie” as one of only three seniors on the roster. Smith hopes to qualify for the IHSAA state finals for the fourth consecutive year.
Courier-Journal: Since you’re one of only three seniors on the roster, you have been asked to be a leader for a program with a strong tradition. What makes a good leader?
Brendon Smith: It’s someone you can look up to and be a role model. I kind of looked up to Oscar Anderson. He was a great senior and showed me the ways, how to do things. After many years of swimming, it kind of rubbed off on me. We have to uphold it and teach the freshmen how it’s done. Hopefully they can continue it on.
C-J: Swimming is a tough sport. You’ve been to the state finals three times as a member of relays. What does it take to reach that level?
Smith: It’s showing up every day and giving 100 percent. That’s definitely what you need to be doing. For me, it’s something structured that I like doing every day. I like putting in the work and effort.
C-J: What have you learned about life from your sport?
Smith: It’s taught me hard work, with the schedule I have to maintain, plus dedication and leadership. I started when I was 5 years old, and I’ve also met some of my life-long friends.
C-J: What made you decide to pursue a career in computer informatics?
Smith: I’ve always been on the computer. Whenever I’m not swimming, I’m on the computer and I’ve always loved it. Everything is computerized now, so there will be a big demand. I just like learning about new things every day.
C-J: Who has been your role model?
Smith: My coach (Joe Perkins) has helped me achieve some of my goals, and I respect him for that. Marc McCormick was a senior last year and one of my best friends. He gave me some tips and we just bonded, and I look up to him.
C-J: What do you enjoy in your free time?
Smith: I like to collect vinyl records. I have about 200. I collect all the oldies, like Bob Seger, Billy Joel, some Neil Diamond and Elton John. It might seem a little weird, but I enjoy listening to old classic hits instead of today’s music.
C-J: What are the goals for the team and yourself this season?
Smith: We’re a young team, but the younger guys are actually really good. I’m looking for them to help us get to the state in relays, and hopefully we can have some individuals get there. That atmosphere at the state finals is amazing, how much competition there is. In that moment, you realize how much your hard work is paying off.
BRENDON SMITH UP CLOSE
School: Floyd Central
Family: parents Alan and Lisa; sisters Megan (24) and Kayla (21)
Student/athlete: Brendon, a state finalist on relay teams in swimming during his first three years of high school, also runs track for the Highlanders. He plans to attend Bellarmine and major in computer informatics.
Coach Joe Perkins: I’m really leaning on Brendon to be a leader this year. As a senior with state finals experience on relays, he has a lot to offer a very young team this season. He is great in practice at pushing our other athletes to go fast on a daily basis.