Former San Diego State Offensive Tackle Josh Simmons Transferring to Ohio State

By Garrick Hodge on April 30, 2023 at 4:18 pm
Josh Simmons
Orlando Ramirez – USA TODAY Sports

Ohio State has landed a key transfer at its biggest position of need heading into the 2023 season.

Former San Diego State offensive tackle Josh Simmons committed to the Buckeyes on Sunday, giving the Buckeyes a potential starter at right or left tackle for 2023.

Simmons took an official visit to OSU over the weekend and was comfortable enough with what he saw to pull the trigger and join the Buckeyes. Ohio State viewed Simmons as the best offensive available in the post-spring transfer window, and the 6-foot-6, 305-pound redshirt sophomore picked OSU over Texas A&M, Florida and Colorado.

The Simmons File

  • Year: Redshirt Sophomore
  • Size: 6-6/305
  • Pos: OT
  • Previous School: San Diego State (2021-22)

The desire to compete for championships played a big role in both Simmons' decision to transfer and join Ohio State.

“We know what they’re about. It’s either natty or bust for them,” Simmons told Eleven Warriors of Ohio State earlier this month. “It’s something I always loved about them.” 

Simmons announced his intention to transfer in February but officially entered his name in the transfer portal on April 15. A few days after he entered the portal, Ohio State offensive line coach Justin Frye reached out and expressed interest in Simmons. 

“It’s an amazing feeling knowing a school like that is interested in you,” Simmons said. “We all know Ohio State is a premier program. They have a need (at tackle), and I just really want to learn about the culture. I feel like Ohio State’s football culture is second to none in the country. They have amazing support."

Simmons will have a chance to compete with the likes of Josh Fryar, Tegra Tshabola, Zen Michalski and other OSU offensive linemen for a starting role at left or right tackle for the 2023 season. He started all 13 games at right tackle for San Diego State last season, but has not been told by Frye whether he'd play left or right tackle.

“He told me nothing is given to me, but they think I’m a really good player, and if I decide to come there, I can compete (for a job)," Simmons said of his conversation with Frye earlier this month.

In 2022, Simmons played 799 snaps and earned a 47.1 overall grade from Pro Football Focus. He was a much better pass blocker than a run blocker, as he graded 65.3 in pass protection and 47.7 in run blocking while being called for 17 penalties. With his commitment to OSU, he's the only player the Buckeyes have that has a full season of starting experience at either tackle position.

Simmons becomes the second player to transfer to Ohio State in the post-spring window, joining former Notre Dame wide receiver Lorenzo Styles, who will play cornerback for the Buckeyes. They join a list of pre-spring transfers that includes Ole Miss cornerback Davison Igbinosun, former Syracuse safety Ja’Had Carter, former Louisiana-Monroe offensive lineman Victor Cutler Jr. and former Arizona State long snapper John Ferlmann. 

As a high school recruit, Simmons was a four-star prospect ranked as the No. 342 overall prospect in the 2021 class. He held offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon, Oklahoma State, Penn State, Syracuse, UCLA, USC, Utah, Washington and Washington State, among others.

Simmons brings three years of eligibility to Ohio State.

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