Pennsylvania Standout Simpson Awaits Letter

Harrisburg, Pa., running back Mikell Simpson told he is very interested in the opportunity he sees at Ohio State. Click here to see where things stand with this prospect, judged as one of the Keystone State's top 15 prospects.

Harrisburg, Pa., running back prospect Mikell Simpson believes Ohio State has some interest in him, although he is awaiting a letter that would show him how much the Buckeyes might like him.

Simpson (6-1, 195, 4.38) told he had been offered verbally by Ohio State. But the school has not followed up with a scholarship offer letter on OSU letterhead, which is typically done to "formalize" offers.

"(OSU assistant Joe) Daniels said they need two or three backs in this class," Simpson said. "He said whoever comes in and stands out right away would have a chance to play right away. That would be terrific for me to play for a team in the top 10 every year.

"They verbally offered me. But if that letter would come in, that would boost them up."

It isn't like Simpson doesn't already have a good list of offers. He said he had offers from the likes of North Carolina, Connecticut, Syracuse, Louisville, UCLA, Michigan State, Indiana, Boston College, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Virginia, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.

He is also unsure where he stands exactly with Penn State.

"Penn State is my in-state school and they're not recruiting me as hard," Simpson said. "I can't wait around on them. I have to look at other schools and other opportunities."

Simpson said he hopes to narrow his choices in the weeks ahead.

"I want to see where things stand on Aug. 16, when we put our pads on for preseason practice," he said. "I want it to be down to 10 teams then. I‘ll talk to the coaches from those 10 schools, then narrow it down to five and take five official visits."

Simpson was a fine two-way player last year for Harrisburg. On offense, he had 862 yards rushing on 88 carries with 17 touchdowns. He also had 23 catches for 520 yards. Defensively, he had 57 tackles and five interceptions.

"Boston College offered me on defense and Nebraska said I would have a chance to play both ways," he said. "I think as a running back, I have a chance to create mismatches with the defense because of my speed. I think it's hard for linebackers to cover me when I come out of the backfield.

"I'm a good athlete and catch good in the backfield. I'm fast on the outside and I can weasel my way through. I'm a big play back with finesse and speed. I want to get stronger and bulk up so I can break tackles better. I also want to make better cuts."

Simpson is rated as Pennsylvania's No. 14 prospect. He is also the 64th-best prospect on the East Coast, according to

Simpson did divulge that "Nebraska is recruiting me the hardest. I am pretty sure I will visit Nebraska, Virginia and UCLA."

He is also hoping some other schools take notice -- soon.

"I'm waiting on Michigan to get back to me," he said. "I think they are recruiting me on defense. I think Penn State will probably offer me. I've been in touch with coaches at N.C. State. I'm also waiting on offers from Notre Dame, Minnesota, Purdue and Illinois."

Simpson was a standout at Penn State's Nike Camp, with his sub-4.4 40 time as well as a 30-inch vertical and 18 reps on the 185-pound bench press. He has also been clocked at 10.8 seconds in the 100-meter dash and 22.7 in the 200.

He holds a 2.8 GPA and scored an 890 on the SAT.

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