BYU has noticed Skyline Receiver

While BYU has taken notice of 2010-class quarterback Jake Heaps, they've also taken notice of his fellow teammate who happens to be an All-Area and an All-State wide receiver.

Gino Simone from Skyline High School in the state of Washington has camped at Boise State, Cal, Oregon, Washington and Washington State, and has gained some interest from BYU. A versatile athlete, Simone plays multiple positions for his Spartan High School team, but there's one position in particular that he is projected to play at the college level.

"I do the kick and punt return and I also play safety and receiver," said Simone. "Wide receiver is my main position and is where I'm projecting to go at some college. I just like to fill in wherever the team needs me."

Having grown some since his junior year, Simone is now close to 6 feet - which is a decent size for a wide receiver - but size isn't something that Simone used to put up some huge stats last season, including 18 touchdowns.

"For me, I'm not the biggest guy, but I like to pride myself on my run after the catch," Simone said. "That's kind of my big thing and I also like to think I run my routes pretty well. I feel like I can manipulate defensive backs pretty well. I had 70 catches last year for 1,417 yards. My overall speed isn't blazing, but I move laterally really well and I think that is what helps me. I'm probably about a 4.6 [forty] guy."

For his accomplishments, Simone has gained local accolades.

"My sophomore year I got First-Team All-League [and] All-State honorable mention," said Simone. "My junior year I got First-Team All-League for receiver and safety, League Offensive Player of the Year, Associated Press First-Team All-State, Washington Press First-Team, and the list goes on."

Although Simone doesn't have any offers in hand, he is hearing from a lot of Division I colleges, including BYU.

"I get letters from the University of Washington, Washington State and have gotten a few from BYU," Simone said. "Cal invited me to their one-day camp and Boise State [did as well]. I'm hearing from UNLV as well, so those are who I'm hearing from right now."

Simone has several programs - all in the Pac-10 - that he is particularly fond of.

"I grew up an Arizona State fan because my dad had played there," said Simone. "But recently I have followed Washington because of what Tyrone Willingham has been starting up. I'm a big believer in him. I've also really started liking Oregon a lot. I just like that spread offense and so I would like to try and start opening up some lines with them as well."

In regards to BYU, Simone hasn't been to BYU's campus but he did briefly speak with a BYU coach that was there at his school during the recruiting process.

"I don't really know a lot [about BYU]," Simone said. "I've only heard what Jake [Heaps] has said and it's only been good things. He said they are a top-15-rank team in the nation and they really like to throw the ball around. He'll throw something out there about BYU once in awhile."

On the football field, Simone happens to be one of the favorite targets of Heaps', Skyline's quarterback. Heaps, part of the class of 2010, already has an offer from both BYU and Washington. Simone has nothing but high praise for his quarterback.

"Jake is definitely a person who is a product of hard work," said Simone. "I've never met a kid along the years that has ever outworked Jake, and it shows on the field during those Friday nights. He's just a phenomenal player and you can see that in his film or during the games."

Heaps and Simone have not only made a connection on the field but are good friends off the field.

"Jake moved up here and was going to go to one of the other high schools," said Simone. "He moved up here when he was in the fourth grade and I was in the fifth grade. It's kind of funny and I'll never forget the first time I met him. He said, ‘Hi, I'm Jake and I'm your new quarterback.' At first I was like, ‘Alright, well, we will see.' It's been that way ever since."

Not only have the two been friends ever since, but they also hope to continue their synergy at the next level.

"Me and Jake have talked a few times about what we would like to do, said Simone. "It's a big-time goal for us to end up at the same school just because we have played together for so long and have that connection. So, we're just kind of looking around right now."


Total Blue Sports Top Stories