As the college football recruiting world looked at E.J. Smith’s recruitment, which ended with a decision to sign with Stanford, many wondered how his father, Emmit Smith, the Florida legend and NFL Hall of Famer, would react.

In a decision broadcast on ESPN2, the Hall of Famer explained his involvement in his son, an athlete from Dallas, Texas, choosing a college destination.

“I’m going to take this hat, I’m going to wear this hat,” Emmit Smith said of the blue Florida Gators hat. “I can wear the hat, he doesn’t have to wear this hat. His daddy went there, that doesn’t mean that my son has to go there. At the end of the day, my son has his own journey, and it is his journey, not my journey. For him to do the things that is best for him, is what we teach all of our children. To find what is best for you and go make it happen for yourself. I’m proud of him for standing up and being the man that he is, the man that he will continue to become, and I’m a Gator, he’s still a Gator because he’s in my family, and my wife is a Gator because she’s in our family. We’re still a family of Gators.”

Smith added that they support not only E.J., but all of their children.

“No matter where they go, we’re going to be parents first, then we can fall in where our kids fall in second,” he said.