Justin Northwest has had notable Division I football recruits.
Wide receiver Gavin Holmes enjoyed the benefit of a great camp season in the spring of 2016. He received double-digit offers before committing to and signing with Baylor.
However, the Texans program hasn’t seen anything like what it has with senior offensive lineman Darrell Simpson. No football recruit has caught such national attention like Simpson (6-7, 310) has.
He’s a four-year starter and anchor to the offensive line as both the left and right tackle. Simpson is on every national recruiting list, No. 125 on Rivals, No. 98 on Scout, No. 170 on 247 and No. 262 in the ESPN300.
Recently, Simpson announced he will make his commitment decision on Saturday. He is expected to tweet his decision. His eight finalists are Ohio State, TCU, Texas A&M, Ole Miss, LSU, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.
We break down what we think about this upcoming decision and make our prediction.
TCU: We believe the Horned Frogs are probably one of the top finalists for Simpson. He’s been on campus several times. From what we understand there is a good rapport between him and the coaches. But is Fort Worth too close?
Ohio State: You can’t argue with a program that has been to the college football playoff in two of the past three seasons. The Buckeyes have lost only three games in the previous two seasons. Head coach Urban Meyer has a history of putting players in the NFL. But is Columbus too far?
Ole Miss: The Rebels could be the weakest of the finalists given everything that has happened in Oxford. Head coach Hugh Freeze resigned in disgrace in July. The program is under NCAA investigation. That makes for a very uncertain future. If you’re Simpson, do you really want to deal with that?
Texas A&M: Proximity makes the Aggies attractive. However, from what we have learned, Texas A&M already may be full with its offensive line class for the 2018 season. So even if Simpson would want to, A&M may not be able to create the space.
Oklahoma: Simpson attended Oklahoma’s BBQ event on July 29 along with other highly ranked recruits. Of course, the Sooners have a new boss in Lincoln Riley, who just took over for the retired Bob Stoops. Also, Simpson has extended family members living in the Norman area.
LSU: You could call the Tigers the mystery team. LSU is another football factory and has recruited well in Texas. But the Bengals on the Bayou just may not be in the mix.
Arkansas: Given how the Razorbacks love very large offensive linemen, Simpson would seem like a natural fit. Perhaps this program is the program that nobody is talking about.
Oklahoma State: Another Big 12 school that isn’t too far away from home. Stillwater, Oklahoma is about a four-and-a-half hour drive. Earlier in the summer, Oklahoma State appeared to feel pretty good about its chances.
The Call: Given proximity — it’s not too far and it’s not too close — and that family lives in the area, we believe that Simpson will verbally commit to Oklahoma. But whatever his decision is, it’s going to be a tremendous moment for him, his family and Northwest High School.