Mr. Assist

January 15, 2017

 

Tanner Smith's motto is simple: The true measure of a man is how he treats those who can do little for him.

 

 

 

 

Though only a 6-5, 205 pound freshman on a Clemson team full of towering figures, Smith is a man standing tall.

 

Since fourth grade, Smith has devoted his life to assisting those less fortunate than himself. At the age of 9, Smith penned his three wishes project for school. His first wish for a Golden Retriever puppy came true that Christmas. The second wish was similar to other young jocks, to play professional basketball. But the third got his parents' attention. Smith wrote that he wanted to "make kids with cancer laugh."

 

Throughout his childhood and teen years - after watching his father, Craig Smith, battle cancer - the wish proved to be light-years more than a fickle kid fancy. It blossomed into a non-profit organization, Tanner's Totes, which delivers goody bags and smiles to children and teenagers fighting cancer in hospitals in South Carolina and Georgia. And it's catching on in other states.

 

And by the way, he can play basketball. As a true freshman, he averaged 3.7 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists in just 13 minutes per game for the Tigers.

 

While helping his Tigers to a 23-9 record this season likely ranks very high priority for a young player hoping to play professional basketball, Smith is doing more with his time in Clemson. He's majoring in pre-business in order to help further the cause of Tanner's Totes.

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