The Terps’ receiver offer binge continued Feb. 19, and this time Maryland extended a verbal to a local product. After handing out close to double-digit scholarships to various wideouts from Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania and New Jersey the day before, head coach Randy Edsall and Co. extended one to nearby pass-catcher Marcus Simms (Sherwood/Sandy Spring, Md.) while on a visit to College Park, Md.
“I’m really, really excited right now,” said the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Simms, who also holds offers from Pittsburgh, West Virginia, Toledo and Eastern Michigan. “Coach Edsall, we had a long conversation just talking about the program, the character of the athletes they want there and things like that. Then he said he wanted to offer me a full scholarship, because I’m everything he wanted in a student-athlete. I was so appreciative, so excited.”
To the point where Simms considered committing on the spot.
“Honestly, I was thinking about committing,” said Simms, who was accompanied by his parents. “I mean, hands down, Maryland is my top school, and I was thinking about just committing. But I am going to wait a little bit just to think things over.
“But, you know, Maryland is the tops. My mom and dad were with me, and they loved the school too. They’re really impressed with what’s going on there.”
Simms had been to Maryland before for a camp and a game, but Feb. 19 was his first chance to see the campus and meet the coaches first-hand. He called the school “really cool” and couldn’t say enough about the staff.
“It was a great campus, amazing,” Simms said. “And I really liked how the coaches were hard on academics and getting your degree. It’s not just about football there, but getting good grades and life after football.
“And I just really liked the school and how it’s close to home and it’s a nice place. Plus the facilities are going to be crazy good.”
The Sherwood receiver said he spoke to pretty much every Terps’ coach save two or three. He said he had a long conversation with area recruiter Chad Wilt, as well as receivers’ coach Keenan McCardell. He also chatted with Edsall, new running backs coach Terry Richardson, offensive coordinator Mike Locksley and others.
“I loved all the coaches there. They were all so welcoming and great to talk to,” Simms said. “But Coach Wilt, he was with me the most. He was saying how we need to get the ‘The Movement’ going, and then he was talking about the education there, how great the campus is, and how he’d love to get me on board.
“And, I mean, I have a great relationship with Coach Wilt. I’ve been in touch with him since early October, and he’s been by the school too. He’s really cool and I probably have a better relationship with him than any other coach. He’s awesome.”
While on campus, Simms had a chance to see the new indoor facility plans and try on the Under Armour uniforms. The latter, predictably, was his favorite part of the visit.
“Trying on the uniforms, the helmets, the Under Armour – oh man,” Simms said. “I like looking nice on the field (laughs), and those uniforms are hot. And the new facilities, the new indoor facility, it’ll be crazy when that thing is built. It’s going to be awesome.
“I watched a couple videos too, and at the end they had a picture of me and it said, ‘We want you here.’ Oh man, it was nice. I’m excited.”
While he loved his stay at UMD, Simms isn’t ready to commit just yet, however. He said now that he has several options to consider, and more undoubtedly about to surface, he’ll be checking out various schools this spring and summer.
Next up is a trip to Penn State Feb. 28, West Virginia March 15, followed by Rutgers, Pittsburgh and Toledo.
“Maryland is the only school I’ve seen so far,” Simms said. “So I want to see a couple more schools first just to be sure. I have to see what else is out there.”
The Sherwood product said he’d like to select his college before his senior season, though he’s content to wait if more schools decide to offer. In all likelihood, though, he’ll be announcing his destination by June or July.
“Maryland is pretty much the school to beat though,” said Simms, who transferred from DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) after his freshman year. “I’m not 100 percent, but I’m really leaning towards them right now. Like, I grew up watching the Terps, and I know Lorenzo Harrison and D.J. Turner are both already there, and they used to be my teammates at DeMatha.
"But I just want to see what’s up right now with these other places. I’m definitely going to take some more visits just to see. But, like, by June or July, I should be ready [to decide].”
Simms is coming off a season where he recorded 34 receptions for 740 yards and nine touchdowns.
“I catch well, I’m a good route runner, I get a quick start off the line, I’m a deep threat, and I can block,” Simms said. “I consider myself an all-around solid receiver. I probably need to work blocking the most though. I need to give 100 percent effort on every play instead of when the play is just coming to my side.
“Also, I’m trying to become even more explosive. I’m in the weight room now, trying to get my leg strength up so I can really explode off the line.”
Simms Lands Terps Offer, Declares Leader
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