Simms Has UMD Firmly In Play After Junior Day

Landon (Bethesda, Md.) outside linebacker Keith Simms was back in College Park, Md., once again Feb. 21, this time for Maryland’s first junior day.

Landon (Bethesda, Md.) outside linebacker Keith Simms was back in College Park, Md., once again Feb. 21, this time for Maryland’s first junior day. The 6-foot-3, 225-pound three-star local has been a fixture at UMD for the last several months, and this most recent visit was yet another opportunity for him to interact with the Terps’ coaches and learn more about the program.

“Everything is always impressive about Maryland, but if I had to say one thing, just the people and the coaches. The people and coaches there are unmatched,” said Simms, who holds offers from UMD, Virginia, Stanford, Boston College, California, Illinois, Indiana, N.C. State, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Temple, Syracuse, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Wake Forest, Wisconsin and others. “The coaches are so real and authentic, and what you see is what you get. I really love that about them, and it’s one of the main reasons why Maryland is so high for me.”

During his stay, Simms said he talked extensively with area recruiter Chad Wilt, head coach Randy Edsall and linebackers’ coach Lyndon Johnson. He has a longstanding relationship with Wilt, the latter letting Simms know he’s priority No. 1 for UMD.

“Coach Wilt is always great to talk to. He’s someone I like and respect a lot, and he’s always in touch with me,” Simms said. “And Coach Edsall, he and I took a picture [during the visit], and he was saying how he’d love to have me there. Like I said, the coaches there are great, and they’re awesome to talk to.

“My teammates Jacob Wright and Mark Ebo were visiting Maryland for the fist time with me, and they loved Coach Edsall and the rest of the coaches too. I also spent a lot of time with Dwayne [Haskins], and he was loving Maryland, and also Abdul Adams [H.D. Woodson/Washington, D.C.] was there; he was into [the Terps] too. We were all talking about how we could potentially picture ourselves at Maryland and do big things there.”

Simms has clearly taken notice of the DMV-to-UMD movement and said Terps commits like Darryl Turner and Lorenzo Harrison from DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) are in all the local recruits’ ears about Maryland.

“A lot of guys I know and want to play with in college are thinking about Maryland right now,” Simms said. “And it’s something I’m thinking about as well. Maryland is a popular school for guys in the DMV right now, and it’s a school I’m highly considering too. So we’ll see how it plays out.”

At one point, the Terps were considered the clear front-runner for the local backer. In fact, Simms was so infatuated with UMD following a recent campus tour with his family, he suggested a commitment could be imminent.

But since then, the Landon product has added a few more “name” suitors, including one from his so-called “dream school,” Stanford.

“I can’t really say any leaders right now, because I haven’t visited enough places, but Maryland and Stanford are very high for me,” Simms said. “I’ve always been big on Maryland, and I always will be. I love the coaches, the facilities and the direction of the program. But Stanford was a huge offer for me, I’m not going to deny that. We’ll see; I still haven’t visited out there yet.”

Next up for Simms is a visit to Penn State Feb. 28, followed by California and Stanford during his spring break in March. Duke and Wisconsin trips are on the radar as well.

For the moment, Simms is saying he’d like to have his college selected by August, although the date could be pushed back if he needs more time.

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