Sandy Creek alum Smith picked 3rd overall in NBA Draft

Smith with Houston Rockets’ general manager Rafael Stone at his introductory press conference.  (Photo Courtesy of Houston Rockets)

One of the most decorated athletes in Fayette County history is cleared to launch his pro basketball career. Sandy Creek High alum Jabari Smith was picked 3rd overall in 2022 NBA Draft by the Houston Rockets on June 23.

Smith, a towering 6’10” forward, made his lone season at Auburn University count, racking up a long list of accolades, including All-Conference, All-American, and National Freshman of the Year honors. He is now also the highest NBA draft pick in Auburn history.

Smith joins another Sandy Creek alum, Calvin Johnson, as the highest drafted local graduates. Johnson, now in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, was picked 2nd overall by the Detroit Lions in the 2007 NFL Draft.