Cats Land Another 4-Star Stud

When you're hot you're hot and Mike Stoops and the Arizona coaching staff is simply sizzling. After the huge news today of the commitment of 5-Star defensive end Louis Holmes it didn't look like it could get any better. But then 4-Star tight end/defensive end A.J. Simmons decided to make Tucson his new home.

Bishop O'Dowd tight end/defensive end A.J. Simmons committed to Arizona tonight during an in-home visit with his lead recruiter, Arizona linebackers coach Tim Kish.

"I committed to coach Kish tonight when he was here," said the 4-Star standout. "As soon as I said it coach Kish got all excited, it was great. Man, he was so excited he was like a 6 year old at Disneyland for the first time. It was great. Coach (Josh) Heupel and Coach (Mike) Stoops were both really excited too. It was a great time and I am a Wildcat."

Simmons visited Tucson for the Cats game against the Oregon Ducks. It is the Ducks who Arizona ultimately beat out for Simmons. The Ducks may have won the game, but the Cats won Simmons.

"My visit was awesome," Simmons said. "I feel really good about the coaching staff and I got to know them all when I was down there. I hung out with all of the players and they are all good guys and it was just great. The city of Tucson and the school are just great places to be."

A.J. is projected by the Arizona coaches as a tight end and that is exactly where he wants to play in college. Simmons is also very confident that he can come in and play right away.

"I know they have a couple of good guys down there at tight end," he said. "I think I can beat them out though. I want to play right away and I have the confidence and I know that I can beat them out. They are good football players and I am looking forward to the challenge."

Arizona linebackers coach Tim Kish was Simmons' lead recruiter and according to A.J. the two get along as well as two people can.

"He has been a good friend to me," Simmons said. "We have developed a real good friendship and I know that he cares about me both as a person and as a football player. Coach Kish is an unbelievable person and I just really like him. He is always so pumped up and excited and he is a great guy to be around."

Simmons was quick to say nice things about his other final school, the Oregon Ducks.

"Coach Bellotti and the Oregon program is great," he said. "Oregon is a great program and I have a lot of respect for them but I am a Wildcat and Arizona is the place for me."

Coach Josh Heupel will be coaching Simmons while he is in Tucson and A.J. had nothing but good things to say about his future position coach as well.

"Coach Hype man, he is just cool," Simmons said. "He always has jokes and is a real fun guy to be around. He is always making you laugh and everything but he is very professional and he works hard and is a good coach too."

When asked if he was a solid commitment to Arizona Simmons quickly responded with, "Oh heck yeah, I am a Wildcat. There is no way I am gong anywhere else. We are going to do great things down there and I can't wait to be a part of the program and of the Wildcat family. I am a Wildcat, period."

Simmons is now the Cats' 18th verbal commitment for the 2006 recruiting class. He is the second tight end as he joins Apache Junction, Arizona standout Cody Anderson.


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