As the 2016-2017 high school basketball approaches in Arizona quickly, we here at Arizona Preps would like to highlight some of
the better players in the state for 2017 who have not committed to a
school, as of yet. One of those players would be 6-foot-5, 185-pound senior SF Caleb Simmons of Desert (Phoenix) Vista HS.
Simmons, who once was highly sought after by numerous college programs, saw his college recruitment tail off this club season.
Simmons played his club basketball this summer with Under Armour -sponsored Splash City (CA) out of Northern California. He has been one of top players in the 2017 class since his freshman year. A physically imposing wing, Simmons performed very well in numerous ways this summer during the times I got to see him play in camps, as well as on the road during the evaluation periods. Simmons, again, has very good size from the wing position, and can really score the ball in spurts, when he is in a zone. He scores primarily off the dribble - keeping defenders on his hip and using the upper body to power through contact/score/draw a foul.
Simmons also has displayed a much-improved jump shot over the years, and looks more and more fluid shooting the ball in a variety of situations now. He is also a consistent free-throw shooter as well. He is also a very tough, gritty defender when he is engaged as well, often guarding the other team’s best player, and taking a personal vendetta against them to make sure that they do not score frequently when he is guarding them.
Simmons also has improved his athleticism as well and gets off of the ground much quicker now in fast break situations, and also uses that athleticism to get weak-side blocks from time-to-time as well.
Simmons should be the key factor in how far a very talented Desert Vista team goes this year, and I truly look forward to seeing how he reacts to stepping into a big leadership role as he is now a senior on a young team.