Simms to watch and learn this season

Matt Simms, Louisville's quarterback of the future, probably won't see the field in 2007. But that doesn't mean the 6-foot-3, 200 pound freshman will be just sitting around and biding his time, either.

Matt Simms, Louisville's quarterback of the future, probably won't see the field in 2007. But that doesn't mean the 6-foot-3, 200 pound freshman will be just sitting around and biding his time, either.

Simms, a native of Franklin Lake, New Jersey, arrived in Louisville earlier this summer to get a head start on life as a college freshman. Since then, he's been taking summer classes and getting to know his new teammates.

"Things are going well," Simms said Friday afternoon. "I took two classes this summer and I got introduced to the school and everything like that. Right now I'm just enjoying my time getting to know my new teammates and enjoying the good atmosphere here at Louisville."

Simms was a U.S. Army All-American at Don Bosco Prep last season, leading his high school team to a perfect 12-0 record and the New Jersey state championship. Playing for Greg Toal, a former player at Virginia Tech, at the Ramsey, New Jersey prep school helped prepare Simms for life at U of L.

"Coach (Greg) Toal really prepared me well for college football," Simms said. "You know, just the whole mind-set of getting your school-work done and spending a lot of time in the film room. So really, the biggest (adjustment) is just getting to know the offense and getting better as a player.


Simms will likely redshirt this season.

"There are things to learn every day. There are things that I need to work and improve on. Right now, I'm just trying to find my place and work on the little things and just each day pick up something new to work on. There is so much I've learned in the past couple months just because I have so many great people around me who know the game of football."

Simms' learning curve has also been aided by a pair of future NFL quarterbacks ahead of on the depth chart in Brian Brohm and Hunter Cantwell.

"It's good to see what mistakes they are making and what things they are doing well and learn from their mistakes and improve your game at the same," Simms said. "So it's great I have two good leaders in front of me like that."

The son of former New York Giant quarterback Phil Simms, Simms has a sort of awkward side-arm delivery. Awkwardness aside, Simms sounds like a guy who will stick with the horse that brought him to Louisville.

"That's just the way I was taught and it's the most natural way for me to throw," Simms said. "Everyone kind of has a different delivery – Brohm's got his way, Hunter's got his way – it's just what I do. As of right now it got me here, so obviously it's doing something right. I'm just going to keep doing that and if I need to correct it one day then I'll just take that step."

Simms' father, of course, grew up in Louisville and played football at Southern High and Morehead State University. Some of Simms' family still reside in Louisville and he said that's help make his transition to his new home that much easier, especially with father taking a low-key approach.

"He comes down every once in a while to see grandma and to say hi, but he really doesn't want to get in the way of camp and everything like that," Simms said. "It's definitely a plus (to see family). Getting that home cooking and just seeing friendly faces and people that you've know for so long is a good feeling."

Last weekend, Simms got his first taste playing in front of a crowd at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. In his only series during the scrimmage, Simms directed the offense to the goal line, before the defense stiffened and held.

"It was just good to get out in front of all those people and playing for the first time again," Simms said. "It was good just being on the field and playing football again in a competitive way. It just felt good being out there again."

With Brohm and Cantwell firmly entrenched, this looks like a season in which Simms will have to sit and watch the action.

"I think that's the (best) option for me right now is to redshirt," Simms said. "I think Coach Brohm thinks the same way just to take my time, learn the offense and maybe mature and put on some weight. As of right now, I think I would redshirt."


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