McKeesport star signs with Texas Tech
TribLIVE Sports Videos
McKeesport football coach Jim Ward began fielding questions about standout defensive tackle Delvon Simmon's future nine months ago.
On Thursday, Ward was relieved to finally be able to provide an answer.
Simmons signed a binding letter of intent to play at Texas Tech starting next season, ending one of the longest, widest-spanning recruiting processes in McKeesport history.
"I know I'm happy its all over," Ward said. "I don't feel like it's ever ended.
"I'm just glad for him. I feel like, in the end, each school presented a great opportunity."
The 6-foot-5, 265-pound Simmons, who didn't return phone calls from the Tribune-Review yesterday, chose Texas Tech over 20 Division I offers. His final decision, however, came down to offers from Texas Tech, Southern Cal and Pitt.
"It was hard for him," Ward said of Simmons who made an unofficial visit to Pitt last week. "He liked (USC and Pitt) a lot. I think that's probably what took him so long to make a decision."
Simmons will be joined at Texas Tech next season by McKeesport linebacker Branden Jackson and Clairton defensive end Desimon Green.
Simmons' journey to Lubbock, Texas, almost never happened.
After originally committing to North Carolina on National Signing Day on Feb. 3, Simmons asked Tar Heels coach Butch Davis to be released from his agreement last month. That decision came after North Carolina defensive line coach Brian Baker took the same job with the Dallas Cowboys five days after Signing Day.
When Texas Tech hired former TCU secondary coach Chad Glasgow as its defensive coordinator, Simmons became sold on becoming a Red Raider.
Glasgow previously coached 10 years at TCU and was an original member of coach Gary Patterson's staff. He will employ a 4-5 defensive front that Simmons feels comfortable with.
"It's a similar scheme to what he would have played at North Carolina," Ward said. "Scheme always remained very important to him. This now kind of evened Texas Tech out, now that they hired that new defensive coordinator."
Simmons recorded a team-high 77 tackles — 17 for a loss — with seven sacks during his senior season at McKeesport. He also had three sacks and recovered a fumble as Pennsylvania's lone representative in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in January in San Antonio.
"He felt this was the best opportunity for him," Ward said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Clues to Chief Justice John Roberts’ thinking on new ObamaCare case
- LaBar: Timing perfect for Sting’s debut at WWE’s Survivor Series
- NFL parity makes playoff chase a multi-team muddle
- Canteen features Woodruff tribute
- Iraqi family, torn apart for opposing Saddam, reunites in Pittsburgh
- Two-alarm fire reported in Swissvale
- Stretch of Route 56 to close
- CT scans can find smokers’ lung cancer early
- Horse racing industry banks on Wolf
- Burrell’s curriculum evolves creatively
- Finding balance between toughness, excessiveness key for Penguins’ Downie