As expected, Zach Simons is starting to get the attention he deserves.
In his first full season as the varsity quarterback at Xavier High School in Appleton last fall, Simons ranked second in the state of Wisconsin with 3,070 yards passing and third with 30 touchdowns.
If that wasn’t enough, the highly skilled junior also rushed for 654 yards and 10 more TDs while leading the Hawks to a 9-2 record and a trip to the WIAA Division 3 playoffs.
“It was definitely a great season,” said Simons, who has been training with NFA for four years and won the Duel in the Class of 2016 division last summer. “Our team chemistry got better every week and we got better every week. It was really fun playing with my teammates.”
Hot college commodity
The fun has continued with a flood of collegiate attention.
Purdue has invited Simons for a June camp, Western Illinois came up to Xavier for a visit, Sacred Heart wants to see the 6-foot-1, 205-pounder at the upcoming Chicagoland QB Spotlight and many other schools are sure to follow.
“There has definitely been a lot more schools that have contacted me and want me to go to their camps,” Simons said. “I’m really excited about that. The whole month of June for me is taken up with football camps. I’m very excited because I always wanted to play at the next level. I feel like this is my chance, as they say.”
Knowing Simons, he is going to make the most of his chance.
Business at hand
Not only is he getting ready to make a strong impression on college suitors this summer, Simons is preparing for his senior season at Xavier.
“I’m really just looking to expand on my game,” he said. “I want to keep working on my technique, footwork and reads. I think I can do better. Last year was really my first year playing quarterback. I can definitely improve a lot more.”
Simons is already preparing for the Hawks’ move to the Bay Conference this fall.
“I watch film from last season’s games and am breaking them down already,” he said. “Moving to a new conference, some of the teams don’t have film on us and we don’t have film on some of them, so we’re starting to break it down now. It’s a tougher conference but that doesn’t necessarily make it a tougher challenge. I look at it as an opportunity to show people what we’re capable of.”
To prepare for any and every challenge, Simons has leaned on his NFA work and he also trained with Will Hewlett at the Range in April.
“It was great,” he said. “And with NFA, they always teach the right technique. But I also like the way they teach you about leadership, how it’s not about you. It’s about moving the chains and getting first downs and I really take that to heart.”
After his senior season with the Hawks, Simons will take his game to the next level.
“Playing Division I football in college is my goal,” he said. “But if it’s not FBS and it’s FCS, Division II, really anything is fine with me. I just want to keep playing.”