USC's Jordan Simmons making move to defensive line


One of the pressing concerns for many USC fans heading into the 2015 season is the depth along the defensive line, a situation that will be a major focus as the Trojans look to replace current NFL rookies Leonard Williams and J.R. Tavai.

To that end, one of the position switches that has taken place this summer involves redshirt junior Jordan Simmons, who spent his first three years on campus on the offensive line but has been spending his time this summer at nose tackle and defensive end.

"It was a mutual decision between the coaching staff and myself," said Simmons, who confirmed he will be lining up exclusively on the defensive side of the ball during fall camp. "I'm looking forward to seeing where it takes me."

Having last seen time on the defensive line during his senior season at Encino (California) Crespi in 2011, Simmons admitted he's still getting acclimated to the new responsibilities associated with the position on the college level, but that players such as Antwaun Woods and Delvon Simmons are easing the transition.

"I'm just learning the basics of it, so I'm basically like a freshman coming in all over again," Simmons said. "I'm just learning the plays and the schemes and everything like that. It's been going well. I have guys over there that are making me feel comfortable."

Simmons noted he is in the best shape since he suffered a serious knee injury in 2013, but that he still isn't quite where he wants to be in terms of his weight.

"I feel really good right now," Simmons said. "I still have some cardiovascular things to work on, but I'm getting there. I'm 6-foot-4 and 331 pounds. The coaches want me down to 315 or 320."