Ben Simmons Talks Moving, Montverde, Recruiting, & UK
Ben Simmons is a big time talent and huge potential.
Interview & Article By: Adam Weaver & Tyler Mounce
There is a new phenom in the US and he is from Australia. Ben Simmons from Melbourne, Australia has recently made the move the United States to attend high school, so he has full opportunity to get into college and eventually into the NBA.
Simmons is a member of the 2015 class and is likely to be a top 10 prospect when it’s all said and done. He was first introduced last year in the US at the Pangos All-American tournament, where he played excellent. Since then, everyone has been paying attention and keeping up with him.
He stands at 6-foot-8, 200 pounds and plays the small forward position. He is a solid player and is able to do about anything on the court.
Below we were able to catch up with him to get his thoughts on moving to the US from Australia, being at Montverde, recruiting, and much, much more:
Not many people had heard about you until the Pangos All-American camp this summer. Then everyone was talking about you. Is that what encouraged you to move to the States?
“To be honest, my parents had always talked about the possibility of sending me to high school in the US for my senior year so I think that Pangos probably just pushed that decision forward a little.”
Your coach Kevin Boyle has coached a number of great NBA players including #1 pick Kyrie Irving and #2 Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. Boyle was recently quoted saying that you were the best player in the world at 18 and under. How hard is it to stay focused and live up to the hype?
“I think that Coach Boyle was being very generous with his comments – there are lots of good players in the US. I just want to be the best I can be, get really strong and work hard on my game. I’m a pretty relaxed person and I just want to be able to stay that way and always be ready and focused when I play. That’s all I can really do.”
Since you’ve moved to the States you’ve picked up a lot more interest from major D1 schools. What schools are coming at you the hardest?
“It’s still a little early to comment on that but I’m just really grateful to be getting some looks from good colleges.”
Do you have a list of schools yet? And are any standing out more then others?
“No, I don’t have a list yet.”
LSU’s assistant coach David Patrick is your godfather. Is that going to play a big role in your decision of where you might go?
“No not really. I’ll choose a college & a coach that is a good fit for me and Dave knows that and would want me to do it that way. If LSU is a good fit then of course I’d think about going there. “
Andrew Bogut is also Australian and was the #1 pick of the 2005 NBA draft. Is he a role model for you and what players do you look up to?
“I see Andrew and Patty Mills as great role models for a player like me coming out of Australia trying to make a league like that, but I also look at players like Lebron and Kevin Durant as other role models. “
Your father Dave Simmons played professional basketball in Australia. Has he helped show you the hard work it takes to play basketball at the top level and how are you preparing for that?
“My Dad always had a great work ethic and was very physically strong. He really believed in doing weights and working harder than the next guy. He’s definitely into detail and training how you’re going to play in the game – you can’t take any shortcuts with him.”
What are some of your goals with the game of basketball?
“To get to a really good college and to hopefully play in the NBA one day.”
What has the transition been like from Australian basketball to basketball in the States?
“It’s different. Faster, there are more skilled players.”
Kentucky has recently become known for getting some of the best prospects in each class? Do you want to become recruited by them?
“Of course, who wouldn’t!”
What would your interest be in the University of Kentucky be?
“I’m not sure, I haven’t really gone into all of that just yet. I’m still settling into high school but I think that a good coach who is going to continue to develop me is a priority.”
What are your thoughts on Coach John Calipari?
“He’s really experienced and seems to prepare players well for the NBA. I’m sure he’d be a great teacher of the game.”
No doubt about it, Ben Simmons is great kid, who has mind set on succeeding in the basketball world. He is going to be an impressive kid to follow over the next couple of years.
Player Profile w/Highlights: Ben Simmons – SF | 6-8 | 200
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