Simms Details Decision To Return To Clemson

JP-Priester

The coming season could be a crucial one for Clemson head basketball coach Brad Brownell. After all the terrible luck his program endured last offseason injury wise, Brownell's program was due some good fortune. 

Aamir Simms deciding to withdraw from the NBA Draft and opting to return to Clemson for his senior season is exactly that, and with expectations being what they are for next season, Brownell needs Simms to help lead the way.

When you combine the talent level with the depth, this team just might be Brownell's best to date. Anything short of a trip to the NCAA Tournament is going to be labeled disappointing. 

Despite withdrawing from the draft, getting to go through the process will be beneficial for Simms going forward, and in more ways than one. 

"I wanted to put my name in, in the first place, to kind of just get a feel," Simms said recently on The Packer and Durham Show. "Get feedback on what teams thought of me." 

One positive to come out of the experience is the fact that he will know exactly what to expect next year when he goes through the process again. He knows exactly where he stands now and can set any goals from there.  

"You kind of get a good representation of your game," Simms said. "You go through the process, and they kind of like grade you on where they think you'd be drafted. Then you'll have your interviews and calls with the scouts and stuff."

Due to the current pandemic, players did not go through any in-person workouts this year. Even without going through that, Simms knew it was probably in his best interest to play one more season of college basketball.

"Even though I didn't get the workouts and stuff," Simms said. "Just the interviews alone let me know what I need to work on and how tedious I need to be with everything going forward. I know what I need to work on, so I thought it was best I just came back to school and perfect my craft going into my senior year."

He also found out from scouts which parts of his game need the most work, and Simms plans to use his senior season to take full advantage of that. 

"Definitely my defensive versatility," Simms said. "You know how versatile I am on offense. Playing on the perimeter as opposed to mid-range. They just kind of want to see me do a little bit more on defense. 

"When I get switched over to a guard if I can stay in front of them for a little bit longer. Protect the rim a little bit more, and guard the post a little bit better." 

Simms says he came out of the process knowing more about himself as a player than he did when he went in. It's a luxury that he appreciates, and one he is choosing to use as motivation going forward. 

"You definitely learn a lot more about your game than you think," Simms said. "They kind of tell you what they think of your game from an NBA perspective. They compare you to NBA players, and they ask where you think your game is on a mental level and an athletic level. Just hearing that intrigues you to get better, get the opportunity to come back and go even harder."

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