In attempting to produce a college decision, Darryle Simmons will be accompanied by his family on all recruiting trips this offseason. Their first endeavor occurred a couple of weekends back when they traveled to North Carolina.
"I come from Philly and it's not a really safe place," Simmons said. "My mom's and my dad's biggest concern is me going some place safe. They don't want to worry about the things they have to worry about [in Philadelphia].
"They saw that Chapel Hill is a really safe, cool environment -- kind of calm. It was some place they could see themselves living."
The experience has given UNC staying power with Simmons, 6-foot-2, 188-pound wide receiver from Philadelphia (Pa.) St. Joseph's Prep School.
"It's definitely one of my top schools," Simmons said. "I don't know where I'm going with a decision date or anything, but I know I'm trying to hit up as many schools as possible until the summer time. And then I'll probably be doubling up with a couple of my top schools. I'll definitely be returning to Chapel Hill [this summer]."
Simmons and his family continued with their travels this past weekend when they dropped by Penn State. This weekend, they're scheduled to visit Tennessee. Simmons is working on additional trips to Auburn, Michigan, and Virginia Tech.
The visit to UNC was Simmons's third to the school. He first visited ten months ago and then camped last June.
"[February's visit] was my first serious visit that I had, so I learned how the coaches saw me fitting into the offense, [and] how I could see myself fitting in at the school campus wise and socially," Simmons said.
Much of the scheme discussion occurred during Simmons's meeting with Gunter Brewer, UNC's wide receivers coach. Brewer envisions Simmons as an outside receiver.
"First, we just talked about Ryan Switzer and his work ethic," Simmons said. "[Brewer] was just saying that regardless of what school that I go to, if I want to make it where I want to get to, I have to be confident and work hard. He was just talking mentality wise."
For St. Joseph's, which went undefeated and won the PIAA Class AAAAAA championship, Simmons caught 34 passes for 526 yards and three touchdowns.
In addition to Brewer, Simmons also met individually with primary recruiter Chad Scott.
"Coach Scott, he's a real genuine person. I have a really good relationship with Coach Scott. So I know, if I went there he'd have my back through the rough times."
Capping the visit was UNC's basketball blowout of Virginia.
"It was crazy," Simmons said. "You don't really get the same feeling from watching it on TV. The fans were crazy. It was much better than I expected."