ST. MARTIN, MS (WLOX) - Ed Simpson is a 6-foot-3 shooting whiz. He helped guide the St. Martin Yellow Jackets to the Division 8-6A Championship and a first-ever win over the Biloxi Indians, bagging 21 points per game.
The senior to be in the fall is a member of the Jackson Tigers, one of 40 teams across the U-S playing in the Nike National Basketball Summer Circuit. Malik Newman of Jackson Callaway, considered one of the premier high school players in the nation, is Simpson's teammate. Newman is taking about 20 shots per game while Simpson is taking 5 to 7 shots an outing.
Simpson said, "They know that I can shoot the ball but they say I have to work with the ball more in my hands and be more of a decision maker. The coaches said once I get that down that I could be unstoppable."@
St. Martin head coach Charlie Pavlus has watched Simpson blossom on the basketball court and says Ed is getting a chance to display his talents before big-time college coaches while competing in various summer tournaments across the nation.
Pavlus said,"Ultimately he's playing against pros because the kids he's playing with are going to be future NBA players." He added, "Ed gets a chance to measure himself against those guys weekend after weekend and what he has to do is come home and take everything he has learned and apply it to the high school game."@
Simpson is netting 12 points per game with the Jackson Tigers and so far has offers from Boston University, Middle Tennessee State, Stetson, Dartmouth and Yale.
Simpson carries a 3.9 grade point average and says academics is key when it comes to choosing a college.
"The big colleges like Dartmouth and the Ivy League schools will set you up for the future if you get a degree there, not just for four years but for the next 40 years in your life."
Simpson will be competing in the National AAU Championships in Orlando and in the Mo Williams Basketball Camp in Jackson August 1st through the 3rd.