Michigan fans can now officially say goodbye to Derrick Walton Jr., and hello to Jaaron Simmons.
Simmons, a graduate transfer from Ohio who tested the waters of the upcoming NBA draft, has enrolled at Michigan for the 2017-18 season, the program announced Tuesday.
Three weeks ago, Simmons said that if he were to play college basketball again — after graduating from Ohio — it would be with the Wolverines. The 6-foot-1 point guard began his college career at Houston in 2013-14 before transferring to Ohio and sitting the following season.
Immediately eligible to play next season, Simmons will likely be a replacement for Walton Jr. He averaged 15.9 points and 6.5 assists per game last season at Ohio.
While Ohio plays against what can be seen as lesser competition than the Big Ten, those numbers don’t lie — he finished eighth in the nation in assists per game in 2016-17.
Simmons’ dream is to still make it to the NBA, and he believes the Wolverines can help get him there.
“I have confidence in myself,” he told MLive last week. “I’ve put the work in. I’ve got confidence in the coaches that I’m about to go play for — that they’re going to help me develop and continue to help me learn. If I put the work in and I learn as much as possible, I think it can happen.”
Beyond the impressive stats, Simmons was named first-team All-MAC and was an All-MAC Tournament selection.