Hertford County High School in Ahoskie, NC has become one of North Carolina's better schools recently for producing division one talent. The Pack struck paydirt there a couple of years ago when they inked ATH Marcus Bond. Last season produced WR Danny Dembry (Wake Forest) and DT Tydreke Powell (UNC). While the class of 2008 at Hertford may not produce a D-1 player, there's already one on the radar for ‘09.
At a hulking 6-5, 340 pounds, OL Will Simmons will likely be one of the state's most highly recruited linemen next year. At the Adidas Elite Camp held at NC State last summer, Simmons proved to be an extremely aggressive prospect who dominated the competition whenever he was able to latch onto a defender. While raw, Simmons has tremendous upside and several schools have taken early notice.
"I haven't received any offers yet but I've been getting a lot of letters from schools like NC State, UNC, Stanford, Georgia Tech, Auburn and some others," said Simmons. "I've got a lot of interest in NC State, UNC and a lot of other schools. I'm really just keeping all my options open right now.
Lining up at right tackle for Hertford County, Simmons has helped lead the way for his team's fast 4-1 start. Already dominant in the run game, Simmons said he spent much of this past summer working on pass protection.
"We've always been a team that runs the ball a lot so I went to the camps and combines to try to improve on my pass protection and foot work."
One of the camps Simmons attended was NC State's and he also visited for the Pack's opening game of the season against Central Florida. The junior lineman said he came away impressed.
"I really like it up there," he said. "It feels like home, and I'm just liking NC State. I talked to coach Willis because he's my recruiting coach and I had a chance to talk to coach Horton, the offensive line coach. I really just liked it up there."
Simmons has also visited UNC and the Heels are solidly on the radar as well.
"I had a chance to visit Carolina, and I really like their staff," he said. "I also thought they had a nice environment."
With his recruiting just now beginning, Simmons says he is settled in for the long haul and has no intentions on an early commitment.
"I really just want to see what comes my way so I'm keeping all my options open right now."