Andre Sims Jr. could have waited out the recruiting process. He could have attended a bunch of camps this summer and eked out a half-dozen or so offers before preseason practices began.
But the Brookwood athlete chose to bypass all that worry and angst and accept the one major scholarship he had. Sims committed to Michigan State this past week.
“Me and my parents got together and talked about all the variables and we just think Michigan State is the school for me,” said Sims, who attended a Spartans’ game last fall and made an unofficial visit to the East Lansing campus two weeks ago. “I was going to go to some camps. Virginia Tech and LSU invited to theirs this summer. I actually already paid for the one at LSU. They wanted me to come to their camps before they offered. But I really liked Michigan State and I didn’t think there was any reason to put it off.”
Sims (5-foot-9, 170 pounds) said he was recruited to play his “natural position” of defensive back at Michigan State. However, he played wide receiver almost exclusively at Brookwood as a junior last year. And he did it quite well.
Sims set school records for receptions in a season (56), receiving yards in a season (915), receiving TDs in a season (9), receiving yards in one game (167) and catches in one game (10). He also returned six punts for 140 yards to put him over 1,000 all-purpose yards for the year.
Sims said he played one game as a defensive back and recorded eight tackles and one interception. But plans are for him to play much more defense as a senior this next season.
Nonetheless, the Spartans saw enough to know they wanted to play him on that side of the ball.
“I think they just liked the ball skills I have,” Sims said. “They said they liked my footwork and my ability to run away from people.”
As for going so far away to school, Sims said he is not worried about it. Several extended family members live in and around Michigan and his father, Andre Sims Sr., works for AirTran Airlines.
Mainly, Sims said he’s glad to have the decision behind him.
“It takes a lot of stress off of me,” he said. “I’m not going to stop working. It’s not time to put it on cruise. I’m still going to work. It’s just one less thing to have to think about.”