Durham Smythe won’t be the only Belton football player signing to go the Football Bowl Subdivision route on National Signing Day.

Tigers senior cornerback Kyle Battle committed to the U.S. Naval Academy during an official visit to the Annapolis, Md., campus over the weekend.

“I love it. I loved everything they were telling me, I loved the players, I loved the team,” Battle said. “After that, I was just fully committed (to Navy) and ready to go there.”

Battle chose Navy over offers from Air Force and several Football Championship Subdivision programs such as Stephen F. Austin and Central Arkansas, and will sign a national letter of intent on National Signing Day, Feb. 6, alongside Smythe.

The 6-foot-1, 175-pound Battle is listed as a two-star cornerback according to Rivals.com, but had been mostly overlooked amongst FBS programs. Navy and Air Force were the only FBS (formerly Division I) programs to offer a scholarship.

“What really mattered to me was the opportunity to play, and what they offered me was what no other schools could offer, and that was being close to home, because I’m originally from New Jersey,” Battle said.

Battle was an All-District 8-5A first-team selection and Daily Herald All-Area first-team defensive back after finishing with 57 solo tackles and three interceptions — combining on a district-leading 115 return yards — including a 95-yard interception return for a touchdown in a 49-14 win over Shoemaker.

Contact Alex Byington at alexb@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7566

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