S Ian Simon 6'0" 185 4.42 Mansfield (TX) Legacy
As a senior, Ian Simon made 68 tackles, and 2 interceptions (returning one for a TD), and had 7 pass break ups, while playing for Mansfield Legacy Head Coach, Chris Melson, who also coached Missouri Assistant Coach, Barry Odom, when he was in high school. Simon also had 3 rushing TDs, 1 receiving TD, and returned a kickoff for a TD.
During his junior season, Simon made 72 total tackles, to go along with a pair of interceptions, 3 fumble recoveries, and 2 forced fumbles. And, he was named as his team's defensive MVP as a sophomore, when he made 94 tackles and had 3 interceptions. Simon was voted team captain by his teammates for each of his last two seasons. Over the past three seasons, Simon was thrice named all-district, academic all-district, and Mansfield Legacy's special teams MVP.
Simon was a regional qualifier in track in each of the past two years at Legacy.
"That was greatness," said Simon, speaking of the time he spent with Jackson last fall, when he visited Missouri. "I grew up watching Kenji play. I've seen him since I was a little kid, and I've seen him play on TV the past few years. He's like a hero to me. It was just really great being able to hang out with him! He's an excellent person! He's a good mentor to me."
Simon and Waters were teammates on a select basketball team when they were younger, and he intimated that he's struck up a friendship with fellow 2011 signee, DB Cortland Browning. Jackson and Waters were instrumental in recruiting Simon to Missouri.
Simon, who enjoys hunting, fishing, and reading, helped to raise thousands of dollars for breast cancer awareness by organizing fund raising walks. His parents are Kim and Daphne Simon.
Simon, who chose Missouri over Air Force, Boise State, Colorado State, Duke, Louisiana Tech, Virginia, and Washington State, among others, is planning to study in Missouri's School of Business.
Simon is spending his time working out, and getting ready to hit the ground running, when he arrives at Missouri in June.
"Ian Simon's a really good athlete," said Coach Dave Steckel, who was Simon's primary recruiter. "What's unique about Ian Simon is that he played both ways. That's really rare, especially for that level in Texas. He played tailback, and he also played safety. He's a really special athlete. He's a really great kid! He's a great student, and he comes from a great family. We're really looking forward to having him in our program."
JP's Take – Ian Simon is a great looking safety prospect who is physical,athletic and has good speed. He exhibits not only a willingness and desire to come up and smack people on running plays, but he also has nice cover skills and the ability with his speed and awareness to cover a lot of ground and make plays against the pass as well. Strong talent that can defend both very well. I like how he fights off blockers and stays with plays. Looks to have a good understanding of the game and football IQ that he uses along with his athletic skills to make plays.
Greg's Take - Simon is a versatile, high-level talent who has demonstrated great leadership skills, and who excelled in multiple roles for his team, and was especially recognized as a hard-hitting, ball-hawking defensive back. He's a quality character guy, and good student, with excellent coverage and ball skills, who is a bigger, faster, and more athletic, version of his mentor, Kenji Jackson.