Business School, Edsall Hit Home With Simms

For the second time in three days, Landon (Bethesda, Md.) outside linebacker Keith Simms was in College Park, Md., for another look at the hometown school June 16.

For the second time in three days, Landon (Bethesda, Md.) outside linebacker Keith Simms was in College Park, Md., for another look at the hometown school June 16. On this particular occasion, the 6-foot-3, 225-pounder had a chance to delve into Maryland’s business school, something he’d been unable to do during his previous trips to UMD.

“It went great. My mother and I sat down with a professor for about an hour-and-a-half, just learning about the business school, the classes I’d need to take to get into that particular school for four years, and things like that,” said Simms, who has the Terps under prime consideration, along with Michigan State, Oregon, Duke, North Carolina, Stanford, Boston College and possibly California. “We had all of our questions answered about class size, my points of interest, different lines of study, different classes – all of it. The business school is very competitive, so one of the main things I wanted to know is if I’d be able to get into it for four years, and I found out how I would go about doing that.

“Also, it was my first time ever being inside the building, so it was good to see the place I’d be studying the next four years if I choose to come to Maryland. It was all really good and very informative. Maryland has an impressive program.”

Simms, along with his mother and father, had spoken to an academic advisor during a previous visit, so he already knew the balance he’d have to strike between football and classroom work. The June 16 trips was, as Simms put it, “all about the business school.”

“I know I’m going to get a great degree if I choose to go there,” said Simms, who was last on campus June 13 in order to talk to area recruiter Chad Wilt, defensive coordinator Keith Dudzinski and Terps commit Dwayne Haskins (Bullis/Potomac, Md.). “It’s going to provide me with a lot of opportunities after football. Like I said, it’s an impressive program.”

While on campus, Simms and his mother also had another sit-down with head coach Randy Edsall. In fact, the three spoke for even longer than the Simmses did with the business professor.

“Coach Edsall talked to us in his office for about two hours, and it was a really genuine conversation,” Simms said. “We talked about football, life, how I’d fit in at Maryland, what I could do with a Maryland degree, and about brand building at Maryland. We talked about the hometown movement, some things about [Edsall’s] philosophies and things like that. Basically, he told me he really wants me at Maryland and thinks it would be a great fit.

“Overall, it was a very good talk, and it was definitely something I’m thinking about. Coach Edsall left an impression on both me and my mom.”

The visit didn’t necessarily change Simms’ view of UMD, mainly because he already held the university in high regard. Maryland has resided among his foremost suitors for months, and very well could be his landing spot by the time he’s ready to announce his decision in August.

“Maryland can’t go much further up; it’s already way up there,” Simms said, chuckling. “I was talking to my mom, and I’m going to be cutting down my [favorites] list to about six or seven schools in the next couple weeks, and Maryland is a no-brainer to be on that list. I love everything about Maryland – the coaches, the school, the program.”

Simms will return to UMD for a third time June 20 for a team 7-on-7 event. After that, he’ll be trekking to some of his other main contenders, including Virginia Tech, North Carolina, Duke, Boston College, Michigan State, Oregon and maybe Stanford and Cal if he has time.

Simms was supposed to see the Hokies, Heels, Blue Devils and Eagles this week into next, but 7-on-7 practices and Maryland’s 7-on-7 forced him to reschedule. Now he plans to see Tech, UNC, Duke and BC later this June, followed by MSU and Oregon in July.

“So if all goes according to plan I’ll take these last few visits then hopefully decide [on a school] by August,” Simms said. “I still might take official visits, but the plan is to see enough to decide by August.”

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