Dave Rice and UNLV is intending to hire Findlay Prep head coach Todd Simon to be a Runnin' Rebel assistant, according to the Las Vegas Sun. Simon served as the head basketball coach of Findlay Prep this past season, but he was the main assistant to prior head coach Mike Peck for the five years prior. During that time, Findlay Prep won three national high school invitational titles, amassing a 157-8 overall record and a perfect 65-0 record at home. Last years team went 35-1.
Simon has been with Findlay Prep from inception in 2006 and has played a key role in building the program into a national powerhouse. The program has produced six McDonald's All-Americans, six Jordan Brand All-Americans and six Parade All-Americans. A number of Findlay Prep players have gone on to play in the NBA, including Tristan Thompson (Cleveland), Avery Bradley (Boston), Cory Joseph (San Antonio), and DeAndre Liggins (Orlando).
Rice is bringing in Simon to replace Justin Huston who left for San Diego State, and the move is obviously for recruiting purposes first:
"He brings head coaching experience and tremendous success at the prep school level," Rice said in a statement. "Coach Simon has a strong background at UNLV having been part of Lon Kruger's staff for two seasons, while working towards his master's degree. Todd has a tremendous work ethic and will be terrific complement to our staff in all areas."
Simon is a good on the court coach since it is proven with him being part of one of the best high school programs in the country, but his connections to Findlay Prep most likely trump most for him getting the job.
Findlay's 2013 college bound class boasts seven players who received division one offers: Nigel Williams-Goss 6'4" (Washington), Stanford Robinson 6'3" (Indiana) Dion Wade 6'7 (Auburn), Allerick Freeman 6'4" (Baylor), Christian Wood 6'11" (UNLV), Benas Griciunas 7'0" (Auburn) and Fallou Ndoye 6'10" (Mississippi State.)
Prior to Findlay Prep, Simon's resume included work at Pepperdine under Paul Westphal and UNLV under then head coach Lon Kruger assisting with video scouting, and camp and recruiting organization.
In the summer of 2006, Simon support the staff of Team USA men's basketball team during their training in Las Vegas assisting a team led by Mike Krzyzewski and staffed by Jim Boeheim, Mike D'Antoni, and Nate McMillan.
Simon has experience recruiting players coming from Canada and Europe that should pay out dividends for UNLV in the future.