Cowley College freshman guard Mike'l Simms has seen his recruitment explode the last couple of weeks, and it coincided with him being cleared by the NCAA to transfer and be eligible to play next fall at the school of his choice.
"When the NCAA said I was qualified, that day I picked up offers from Loyola Marymount and Youngstown State," said Simms. "A couple of days after that it started blowing up. East Carolina offered and then Wichita State, Texas Tech, and UC Santa Barbara. Then others like Pittsburgh, VCU, and Memphis. NC State was the latest, they offered me last night, and I'm also talking with Miami."
NC State head coach Kevin Keatts informed Simms of his offer last night.
"Coach Keatts called my AAU coach at Team Loaded and talked about how interested he was in me," said Simms. "Once I was able to get on the phone with him, he started talking about the needs in the program at NC State. They want someone experienced who can score on all three levels. They also want players who are quality guys on and off the court.
"It was a great feeling to hear from him that he thought I fit what they were looking for. I was very excited. It was unbelievable at first because they're in the ACC. I know they are going through a coaching change and trying to rebuild and that means a lot that he'd want me a part of that process."
Now the plan is to set up a visit with the Wolfpack now that the dead period is ending.
"We'll be discussing a visit today," Simms stated. "I may visit NC State real soon because I'm trying to make a decision real soon. That's something I'm hoping to find out here today.
"I'm already pretty familiar with them because I did a prep year in Durham, North Carolina and a lot of our games were at Body of Christ in Raleigh. Also, my prep school coach actually coached Dennis Smith so I know about them."
Simms played just one season at Cowley College but made a huge impact. He averaged a team-best 14 points per game and 4.4 rebounds while playing just 22 minutes a night. He averaged 25.8 points per game in the Tigers' last five games, including a 45-point outing in a win over Pratt. Simms shot 44% from the field, 36% from three, and 82% from the free throw line.
He was named Second-Team All-Jayhawk East team and Second-Team All-Region VI Basketball.
"I think my game is versatile," said Simms. "I can do a lot of things from attacking the rim, stretching the floor, and spot-up shooting."
Because he only spent one year at Cowley, Simms has three years of eligibility remaining. He admits that he doesn't have a leader but three schools are currently slated to receive official visits.
"I'm not leaning to anyone," he said. "That's why I'm taking the visits. I'm going to lay it all out, take the visits, and trust where I feel I have to go.
"I know I have one set up with Texas Tech for sure, and I'll be visiting NC State and VCU for sure. Those three visits are on my mind right now, and I may take one more but I don't want to prolong it. I want to get to work. Those three are pretty much on my mind because I want to get started with summer school. I'm really ready to get work."