After rumors of California and July's Supplemental Draft, it seems like Charles Sims has finally made the decision to transfer to the University of West Virginia. After graduating from the University of Houston, Sims left the school for unknown reasons. Since he graduated, he is allowed to transfer without sitting out a year.
He wasn't allowed to just transfer wherever he wanted too, though. Houston barred him from playing with any team in Texas (rumor started early about him and Texas Tech), any team in the AAC, or any team that Houston is scheduled to face in 2013.
Now, he's decided to be a West Virginia Mountaineer, and will finish his college career taking over the feature playmaker role of the program after seeing Tavon Austin go Top 20 in last year's NFL Draft.
Fox 26 Houston's Mark Berman broke the news on the twittersphere today stating he was not just transferring, but at the time was taking his official visit. West Virginia is quickly reloading their play-makers from last year. After losing Tavon Austin and Geno Smith early in the 2013 NFL Draft, WVU shipped in not only Sims but Clint Trickett, a former Florida State Seminole quarterback, another graduate transfer expected to start in 2013. They are expected to contribute a lot to the offense, which has vacancies left by the 2013 draft class.
Charles Sims topped off Optimum Scouting's Graduate Transfers Watch List and Supplemental Draft Watch List . Our own Eric Galko had this to say about the former-Cougar: “Sims comes from the Houston “Air Raid” type offense, where he was asked to run quite a bit from the shotgun in zone read plays as well as an out of the backfield and slot receiver.
As a running back, he keeps himself tight up and through the hole, keeping his base strong with a little wiggle when working in traffic initially. While he doesn’t have elite top speed, he’s able to transition laterally with balance to maintain his speed as he works upfield. And as a receiver, he’s smooth with the ball in his hands in space, and transitions upfield quickly without hesitation. He also has experience in the slot receiver set.
I wouldn't expect Sims to be the only running back to get work out of the WVU backfield, though. Even though the Mountaineers are losing three of their four players with 50+ carries in 2012, their leading rusher, Andrew Buie (an incoming junior), is returning. In his two years as an active player, Buie has ran the ball 230 times for 1,023 yards and 8 scores. Dustin Garrison, who saw a lot more action his freshman year (2011) than 2012, has 182 carries for 949 yards and 8 scores.
Outside of those two runners, the stable is shallow in depth. Sims should get most of the carries, but I wouldn't doubt a two back rotation being in the mix for the Mountaineers. Sim's experience in the slot could help him stay on the field with WVU and solidify him as the number one back. WVU runs the air raid, not too different from what Houston does, and they have used running back/slot hybrids, like Tavon Austin, in multiple positions across the field. While Sims is much bigger than Austin at 6'0” 205, it's a possible plus for him in the minds of the coaching staff.