Offense or Defense, Damian Sims can deliver

Year in and year out, the state of Florida is loaded with outstanding skilled position players. This year will be no different. Add Damian Sims to the list of players that call Florida home. The 5-foot-10, 183 pound running back/cornerback with 4.48 forty speed has an impressive list of offers and more should be on the way soon.

Sims, who plays high school ball in Boca Raton (Fla.) Pope John Paul II, has already received offers from Virginia Tech, Pittsburgh, Iowa, Boston College, Iowa State, and Rutgers.

"Georgia told me that I will have an offer when I get my test score back," Sims, who carries a solid 2.7 grade point average in the classroom, said. "Florida State wants to see my test results and coach Lilly wants to see a game or two and then they will offer. Coach Miller from Florida has called also."

Some teams are recruiting him as cornerback and others as a running back.

"Virginia Tech is recruiting me as a defensive back while Pittsburgh is recruiting me as an athlete," he said. "Florida State is recruiting me as a running back. I prefer to play cornerback in college though."

What do coaches in Pittsburgh and Florida State think of the second team all-state player?

"Coach Charlie Partridge of Pittsburgh called me and said he has seen my film," Sims said. "He said I have good speed and quick hips. He told me that they were going to offer. Coach Lilly of Florida State said I reminded him of Peter Warrick."

Larry Bluestein, a Florida based Insiders.com recruiting analyst, is also high on Sims' ability.

"He's got good speed and vision at running back," Bluestein said. "He's much underrated at running back. I think he might end up at corner in college though. He's going to wear some people down."

Last year as a junior Sims rushed for 1,676 yards on only 208 carries with 24 touchdowns. He also caught 21 passes for 312 yards.

On defense, he intercepted three passes.

"I played defense occasionally," Sims, who was selected Small School Player of the Year in Palm Beach County, said. "I would play a couple of series a game at corner when my team needed a big-time stop."

Sims compares his style of play to former Florida State wide receiver Peter Warrick and current Miami Hurricane wide receiver Roscoe Parrish.

"I make people miss," he said." I can stop and start better than anyone."

Right now, Sims is open and needs time to research some schools. However, teams like Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech, Florida State, Florida and Georgia have sparked his interest.

What does he think of the Panthers?

"I like the fact that they have almost beaten Miami two years in a row," he said. "Pittsburgh also has some Florida boys on the team."

Sims, who will most likely attend Florida and Florida State football camps this summer, is looking for early playing time.

"I want to get on the field as quickly as possible," Sims said. "I know I might have to redshirt my first year. After that I'm taking someone's spot."

Dave Peters
PittInsiders.com


Panther More Top Stories