Rarely does Tracy Smith take the time to put all of his stunning life adventures in perspective.

Seems like there's still too many things yet to do.

Like raising his 3-year-old son and running one company and starting another and...

The Dallastown High graduate has come a long way from a humbling construction job after college.

"It's been good. It's really been good," Smith, 42, said about a life that has taken him all over the world. "The days are so busy, and I always look forward to see what I can do next."

And yet so much already has happened to the football star since he left Dallastown in 1983.

The compact and powerful runner (5-foot-8, 220 pounds) starred at Duke University on the football field (the team's leading rusher as a junior) and in the classroom (a few credits shy of a triple major in history, political science and public policy studies).

He always, though, was about so much more than sports.

He passed on tryouts with the Chicago Bears and New England Patriots for a summer studying at Cambridge University in England.

He earned a master's degree in international affairs at the University of Pittsburgh.

He worked for a U.S. senator.

His big break, though, came in landing a job with a large defense contractor. His adventures began with a trip to the far reaches of far-away Kazakhstan to help the Russian government disarm intercontinental ballistic missiles.


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That eventually led him to the CIA.

"In college, the agency seemed romantic, I don't know," Smith said with a laugh. "It was traveling and living overseas."

His first international assignment was in Budapest, Hungary, in 1999.

There, he met his future wife (a former UCLA soccer player), who was doing visa work for the state department.

He proposed on a ferris wheel in London two years later and they were married in Hallam.

Adventures?

The couple attended Christmas Mass on a Jordanian mountain where Moses is presumed to be buried.

They honeymooned along Italy's Amalfi Coast. They vacationed on the Turkish side of Cyprus. They scuba dived in the Red Sea.

They camped in the Wadi Rum Desert, popularized by Lawrence of Arabia. "I never saw so many stars at night," Smith said. "I didn't know there were that many in the sky."

Of course, there was work to do. In Hungary he tracked down nuclear material smugglers. In Baghdad he was shot at while looking for weapons of mass destruction.

He visited more than 20 countries, logging about 250,000 air miles in two years.

And life has kept firing fast since returning to the U.S.

He left the CIA, welcomed baby boy Alexander into the world and moved his family to Monterey, Calif., last September.

He also started his own defense contracting business that has five offices, including one in Vienna, Austria.

Now he's planning to create a nonprofit company dealing with veterinary medical support in Africa.

Maybe the most important thing, though, is that working from home provides for long lunches and long ocean walks each day with his wife. And more time with his son. And the flexibility to reconnect regularly with his mother when she flies out from Dallastown.

"I probably should work more than I do," he said with another laugh.

Always, it seems, so much more yet to do.

TEN BEST WILDCATS

Jen German ('93)

She not only is the all-time leading basketball scorer in school history (1,694 points), she also earned all-state honors in volleyball and was one of the top track and field athletes around. She was the YAIAA's

top scorer as a junior in basketball and was the Daily Record "athlete of the year" twice in track and field. She placed third in the state in the long jump as a junior, and third in the state in the javelin and fourth in the long jump as a senior. She won district gold medals in both events. She was recruited by Division I basketball schools such as Seton Hall and Georgetown but honored an early-signing commitment to Division II Bloomsburg. 

Paul Snyder ('53)

The four-sport star passed on signing a Major League Baseball contract out of high school to give college a try. He also was recruited for baseball by Penn State, but the fullback and defensive end/linebacker chose a football scholarship to Lebanon Valley College. He also was one of the better basketball scorers around. He was a track and field standout, winning a district title in the discus and finishing third in the high jump as a senior. He was best-known for baseball, though, where the center fielder was scouted hardest by the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Suzi Sutton ('00)

She did it all, scoring 1,124 career points in basketball and a school-record 61 career goals in field hockey to go with earning honorable mention all-league honors as a soccer player. In hockey, the senior scored a league-leading, school-record 30 goals and earned a Division I-A scholarship to Northwestern University.

Donnie Moore ('95)

The three-sport star made the most of his two years at Dallastown, highlighted by being selected in the 16th round of the Major League Baseball Draft by the Milwaukee Brewers. Entering his senior season the outfielder was ranked among the top 50 prospects in the nation by Baseball America magazine. He also was a standout running back and safety in football, earning recruiting interest from New Mexico State and others. The superb scorer in basketball earned honorable mention all-league honors twice.

Shannon Bortner Werner ('98)

She is arguably the best girls' volleyball player the area has ever seen. She was a two-time YAIAA player of the year and a two-time all-state honoree, which included being named as the Gatorade Pennsylvania Player of the the Year as a senior. She earned a full ride to Penn State. She was an honorable mention all-YAIAA pick twice in softball.

Chris Moore ('99)

The dominating running back also showed flashes of brilliance in track and field and on the wrestling mat. In football, he led the league in rushing as a junior (1,599 yards) and was second as a senior (1,426 yards). He broke the school single-game rushing record with 336 yards and six touchdowns on 34 carries against Central. He was recruited by Pitt, West Virginia and others but ended up going to Thaddeus Stevens Tech before transferring to the University of Charleston in West Virginia, a Division II school. He also was a high school track and field standout, ranking second in the YAIAA in the 100 (11.2) and the shot put (45-3¾) as a junior. He even was a starting wrestler at 189 pounds.

Dick Hartman ('70)

The wrestling state title winner also was a standout football player. He won district and state wrestling titles as a 180-pound senior and earned scholarship offers from the University of Maryland and others. In football, he was a dominating end on offense and defense and was recruited hardest by Division II schools. He did not attend college.

George Myers ('69)

He won district and state wrestling titles at 145 pounds as a senior and was a district runner-up as a junior. He earned a wrestling scholarship to the University of Maryland. He also was a standout center and linebacker on the football team.

Beth Sylvanus Barton ('96)

The two-time swimming All-American dominated in the 50 and 100 freestyle, winning four-straight YAIAA titles in both. She still holds those school records, too. She won district and state titles in the 100 free with a second-place state finish in the 50 free. She was the first female to win a state gold medal in any sport at the school. She earned a scholarship to Stanford.

Tracy Smith ('83)

The senior running back played on a 3-7 team that made his astounding numbers - a 7.4 yards-per-carry average and a 317-yard, five-touchdown performance against rival Red Lion - even more impressive. He gained 2,175 yards in his career, was recruited by Penn State and chose a scholarship to Duke over the Naval Academy. He earned a spot on the prestigious Big 33 team. He also was a second-place finisher in the shot put in the county track meet as a senior.

Best of the rest: Other notable athletes

In the pool

Dallastown has enjoyed one of the great swimming traditions in YAIAA history. There are too many, really, for all to earn their due, but here are the credentials for some of the best not mentioned elsewhere.

Scott Conley ('90): At one time he owned all eight individual records on the boys' board. He still owns school records in the 200 IM, the 100 butterfly and the 500 freestyle. He earned a scholarship to the University of Arizona.

Beth Roeder Zimmerman ('84): She won districts three times in the 100 butterfly and finished second in the state as a sophomore. She earned all-state honors in the 100 fly and the 200 freestyle as a junior. She earned a scholarship to Bloomsburg.

Reggie Shearer ('02): The three-time swimmer of the year won three straight 50 freestyle league titles and two district titles. He still holds district records in the 50 and 100 freestyle. He earned two All-America honors and swam at West Chester.

Christina Tillotson Sheets ('95): She might have won multiple district and state titles in the 100 breaststroke and 200 IM - instead of silvers - if she didn't have to compete against Wilson's Kristy Kowal, who went on to star in the Olympics.

Megan Tracy ('97): The two-time All-America swimmer never lost a backstroke race in the league or at districts. She earned a state silver medal in the 100 backstroke. She swam at Clarion.

Elin Westrick ('92): She was a 4.0 student and the league's co-swimmer of the year with Tillotson as a senior. The two-time All-American won a district title in the 50 free and starred at Cornell.

And, of course, Whitney Metzler Krosse ('96): She finished eighth in the 400-meter individual medley at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. She, however, never swam for Dallastown's school team.

Other athletes

Joe Aiken ('80) won four events - the long jump, triple jump, high jump and 110 hurdles - at the league track and field championships as a senior.

Tim Barkdoll ('86) was second in the state cross country meet and won district and state track titles in the two-mile as a senior. He was recruited by Penn State and Bucknell but jumped at the chance to run for the Naval Academy.

Dave Gable ('82) was a four-time wrestling sectional champ and the first in school history to win 100 bouts. He was an All-American at Franklin & Marshall College.

Ron Gaynor ('78) went from a walk-on quarterback at West Chester to signing preseason free-agent contracts with the Seattle Seahawks, Philadelphia Eagles and Buffalo Bills.

Brian Good ('01) won YAIAA titles as a sophomore, junior and senior in the long jump and triple jump. He won a district title in the long jump as a junior. He competed for Seton Hall before transferring to Millersville.

Keith Hamberger ('71) unexpectedly earned the starting quarterback role because of a team injury - and then did well enough to earn a scholarship to Virginia Tech.

Billy Heird ('06) won a Class AAA district tennis title as a senior and finished second in the state. He went on to play at Division I Longwood University in Virginia.

Sam Jamison ('64) led his basketball team in scoring for three years and ended with more than 900 career points. He also led the baseball team in hitting as a senior and starred in cross country.

Chad McGowan ('04) became the first basketball All-American at York College - then did it again as a senior.

Sarah McGowan ('06) scored 1,361 career points in basketball, earning a Division I scholarship to Quinnipiac College. She also starred in field hockey and soccer.

Oliver Merrill ('85) is the last boys' tennis player to win three league titles.

John Moore ('84) was the YCIAA's basketball player of the year as a senior and earned a scholarship to Mount St. Mary's.

Tom Nicholson's ('88) league-best 78 3-pointers stood as a single-season record until 1999.

Mark Noll ('83) won a state wrestling title at 126 pounds. He wrestled at Franklin & Marshall College.

Cindy Phillips ('81) scored more than 1,000 career points in high school and became Towson University's all-time leading scorer in only three seasons.

Rick Rutecki ('77) led the YCIAA in basketball scoring as a senior and piled up 1,436 career points - third in school history. Played college ball for Columbia.

Sarah Ryan ('96) won four gold medals at the YAIAA title meet (100, 200, long jump, 400 relay). She went on to win district and state titles in the long jump, setting a school record at states (18-9).

Dana Schnell ('94) is the second-leading female basketball scorer in school history (1,412 points) and earned a Division I scholarship to Radford.

Jim Smith ('63) won gold medals at counties, districts and states in the 440-yard dash.

Levi Strayer ('98) was the YAIAA's Division I soccer player of the year as a junior and senior. He also was named a high school All-American and earned a scholarship to James Madison University.

Justin Terhune ('05) is the school's all-time leader in wrestling victories with 126, including two district titles and a state silver during a 36-1 senior season. He wrestled at Drexel.

ABOUT THIS SERIES

Coming up with a short list and then ranking the 10 greatest athletes in the history of each YAIAA high school was a daunting task. For sure, there is no scientific approach. But after two years of interviews, research and roundtable

discussions, we are presenting as fair an attempt as possible to create an objective list on a decidedly subjective topic.
OUR CRITERIA: 1. The only accomplishments considered were those achieved while competing in high school varsity athletics. If an athlete earned a college scholarship, that was also factored in. 2. Accomplishments outside the setting

of high school varsity sports and accomplishments after high school were not taken into account. 3. Athletes who

attended more than one local high school were only evaluated at the school where they had the most varsity success.

4. Female athletes were rated by how they dominated their own sports - not how they would fare going head-to-head against male athletes.

YOUR TURN

Our list and ranking of each school's greatest athletes is just the starting point. Now the fun part begins: the debate. If you'd like to comment or offer a differing opinion on this list, we'd love to hear from you. Each Sunday, we'll

present your feedback on opinions on page 2 of the York Sunday News sports section ("The Rundown"). E-mail your thoughts to Sports Editor Chris Otto at cotto@ydr.com, call 771-2064 or send a letter to: "Greatest Athletes,"

c/o Chris Otto, 1891 Loucks Road, York 17408.