Coveted guard prospect Anfernee Simons is reportedly planning to play college basketball at Louisville after giving the Cardinals a verbal commitment last weekend.
Evan Daniels of Scout reported Friday that Simons quietly committed to head coach Rick Pitino during an unofficial visit to the school. Simons' Team Breakdown coach, Kenny Gillion, confirmed the decision.
The class of 2018 standout was impressed with how much interest Louisville showed while most programs are still focused on 2017.
"The big thing is coach [Pitino] really recruited him hard," Gillion told Scout. "It started when they offered him and they got out in July. They went to Under Armour camp and then the next event was an off the path event and he made sure to check it out. Then at the end of July in Miami he was there to see him."
Simons is a 4-star prospect who rates as the No. 45 overall player in the 2018 group, according to the Scout player rankings. He also checks in as the No. 12 point guard and the second-best player at the position from the state of Florida.
The outlet listed Florida, Oklahoma State and Virginia Tech among the other high-profile schools that showed interest before the guard opted to give Louisville an early commitment.
At 6'3'', Simons already possesses the frame to play point guard at the collegiate level. He's working hard to add more power during his remaining time in high school so he's prepared to hit the ground running once he makes the jump to the next level, per Buddy Collings of the Orlando Sentinel.
"What I was always critiqued on was not being strong enough," Simons said. "I've been working at being more explosive the whole time. It finally kicked in and I started getting really athletic. I can see it in my dunks and being able to get to the basket and finish."
It's allowed the Edgewater High School star to add more variety to his offensive game. He's now far more comfortable attacking the paint to put pressure on opposing defenses. He was already advanced for his age in terms of outside shooting and distribution.
Although it's far too soon to know exactly how he'll fit in the puzzle at Louisville by the time 2018 rolls around, his stock is definitely trending in an upward direction. He owns an impressive skill set and has made steady progress since arriving on the national radar.
Ultimately, if Simons' development continues on its current path, he shouldn't have much trouble making an instant impact for the Cardinals as a freshman.