Colby Simmons from Gulf Shores, Alabama is a gifted passing quarterback who, up until now, has gone un-noticed by the college coaches community, but that is about to change.
Colby Simmons is a Gifted passing quarterback With a “Rudy” Moment!
By Max Emfinger
Colby Simmons (6-3, 185, 4.7) from Gulf Shores, Alabama is an unusually gifted passing quarterback who, up until now, has gone un-noticed by the college coaches community, but that is about to change. Quarterbacks and all other skill players are not as difficult to evaluate as linemen, because if a quarterback makes plays and puts the football in the end-zone, it’s easy to say that he is a great “Playmaker” and he usually has numerous scholarship offers from college coaches.
Sometimes, however, a quarterback or another skill player like a running back or wide receiver or defensive back, for some reason did not get on the initial college coaches recruiting list and as the recruiting season goes on, it is also very difficult for that player to ever get added to that recruiting list. I have had to fight through this system for years and that is the reason that I created my All-American Bowl Game Classic in 2005, so that I could highlight these great players that for some reason did not initially make the college recruiting list.
Two of the biggest reasons that a talented quarterback will get over looked is that he either has an injury as a sophomore or junior or he is lost in a transfer move from one school to another and the player simply gets lost in the schuffle from the move.
Simmons did get lost in the transfer and he was never able to get put on to any college coaches pre-lists. In 2008, Simmons moved to the Houston area with his dad, Randy Simmons, and as a freshman, he enrolled at Clear Creek High School in League City. His mom and sister remained in Alabama at Gulf Shores, because their Grandfather had recently had a stroke.
At Clear Creek High School, Simmons became the starting quarterback for the Freshmen team in a Spread Offense and he finished the season with just over 1,400-yards passing with 11 touchdown passes and four rushing touchdowns. Simmons had his Freshman Highlight film available and it was pretty impressive. On his first pass of the game, he completed an 89-yard touchdown pass. Then on the second pass, he completed a 34-yard touchdown and on his third pass, he completed a 26-yard touchdown. I had seen enough and I was impressed. Remember! This was as a Freshman in Texas.
After this impressive freshman season, his dad started looking for a quarterback trainer to help Colby develop his quarterback skills and he found Debartelo Sports and Quarterback Coach Joe Dickinson. All of this training really paid off as Simmons became the starting quarterback as a sophomore.
Then, just before his junior season, Colby and his dad, Randy, missed their family and then Randy was offered a great business opportunity to move back to Gulf Shores and they did. Their Family meant a lot to them, but they also knew that Gulf Shores had a starting quarterback that was a D-1 Prospect and they knew that Colby would probably play behind him until his senior year.
Simmons accepted the challenge and prepared just like he was going to be the starter. He played some as a back-up, but not as much as he had been playing. Then, Simmons looked great in Spring Training. After Spring Training, Simmons started attending various College Football Camps all over the Southeast, including Camps at Southern Miss, Western Alabama, Ole Miss, Furman, South Alabama, Houston, Louisiana Tech, and Alabama.
Simmons received Outstanding Quarterback Awards at two of the Camps, including Western Alabama and NFA in Houston, Texas. Simmons was also given an invite to go to Canton, Ohio to participate in Dual of The Dozens, but he could not attend due to previous obligations. All of this should have helped him to receive numerous scholarship offers, but since Simmons was not on any of their initial recruiting list, the colleges did not offer him a scholarship.
In the last forty years, I have seen some strange things happen with high school coaches that are pushing a particular agenda or a particular player for some type of political gain. I once saw a great quarterback that was the victim of a coach that was playing an inferior player, who was an underclassman, ahead of him, because the coach was paying off a debt to the Grandfather of the kid who had bailed him out of jail for fraud.
I also have had a multitude of coaches who would not play a player or recommend a player to college coaches, because they either did not like the mom or dad of the player.
In 2010, I had a wide receiver who was 6-3 and could run a 4.31 in the forty and he averaged 38.5 yards per catch, on ten catches, as a senior on a running team, but he had no scholarship offers when he came to our first All-American Bowl Game practice, because his high school coach was lazy and simply would not recommend any of his players to college coaches. This player was Co-MVP in our AABG and after the game, he got 10 or so offers.
In 2011, I had an offensive lineman that was 6-10 and 320-pounds, but his high school coach did not like his dad and he would not recommend him to college coaches. He came to our 2011 All-American Bowl Game with no offers; was Offensive Lineman MVP, and he got six offers after the game.
After having a great Spring Training and looking great all summer, Colby Simmons was primed and eager to start his senior season. Then, about two weeks before the first game of the season, his high school coach changed their offensive game plan as he went from a passing attack to a run-oriented attack and then the coach announced just before their Jamboree that a junior quarterback would be the starter.
Colby was crushed, but he and his dad talked about it and they both decided that Colby was not going to quit and they also decided that Colby would prepare every single game as if he was the starter and hope and pray that he would get his chance.
The offense sputtered in every game, because the team just did not have the personnel or talent to be a running team. Then, against Foley, the offense could not move the football and Colby was put into the game and he threw a touchdown pass.
Although this sounds like a true Fairy Tale, it is true. Everyone on the team and in the stands for the Gulf Shores football team knew that the team was struggling, trying to run the football without proper running personnel, but the coach was still trying to run the football.
It’s difficult to believe how much Simmons struggled while going through such a frustrating and disappointing senior season, but then the last game of the season came. In the middle of the third quarter, with his team losing 7-0, the junior quarterback got hurt and Simmons was sent into the game to take over at quarterback. After a few series, the coach pulled him and put in the third team quarterback.
Finally, Simmons led the team down the field to the four-yard line, but then on a second and Goal, Simmons handed off for a no-gain and the coach pulled him and put the third team quarterback back-in again. After the third and Goal did not make any yards, instead of trying for a field goal, the coach called for the third team quarterback to try to throw a touchdown pass, but it was intercepted in the endzone and run out to the five-yard line.
After the other team drove down to the 17-yard line, the Gulf Shores Defense held and took over on downs. This is when Simmons drove the football all the way down the field and then threw a nine-yard touchdown pass.
The Gulf Shores Defense scored a safety and then got the football back. On this series, Simmons drove this team down the field and threw a 15-yard touchdown pass. The defense held still another time and Simmons drove the football down the field and ran the clock out to win the game.
The “Miracle-Game” had arrived in the last game of the season as Simmons completed 12 of 17 passes for 179-yards and two touchdowns, while running for another 8-yards, giving him 187-yards of total offense in only one-and-a-half quarters in leading his team to a 16-13 victory. Simmons in a gifted passing quarterback with an unforgetable “Rudy” moment.
The amazing truth about this incredible story is that #15 Colby Simmons and his WR Teammate #82 Thrisstan Cornell (6-4, 180, 4.4) were unbelievable on their highlight film. Simmons can make every throw. After watching Simmons and Cornell on their highlight film, it was an easy choice to invite them to participate in my 2013 Ninth Annual All-American Bowl Game Classic.
The great thing for Simmons and his family and friends is that the All-American Bowl Game this year will be played at Daphne Jubilee High School Football Stadium in Daphne, Alabama, which is in his backyard.
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