Former University of Maryland wide receiver Geroy Simon will be honored this month.
Simon, a Pennsylvania native, is scheduled to be inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame on September 14.
“It’s something that’s pretty exciting,” said Simon, who celebrated his 42nd birthday on September 11. “I’m honored and humbled to be going into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame.”
In 2014, Simon retired as the most prolific wide receiver in Canadian Football League history. During a 15-year CFL career, Simon earned numerous individual accolades and captured three Grey Cup championships which is the equivalent of an NFL Super Bowl title.
Although Simon spent the majority of his professional career with the BC Lions, he also played with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
“Geroy was a special player who played a significant role in the success of our organization for many years,” BC Lions General Manager and head coach Wally Buono said in a statement. “He was an incredible talent on the field who left an indelible mark on our league and I am proud to offer him sincere congratulations on behalf of our club.”
Simon owns the league record for most career receiving yards (16,352) and most career receptions (1,029). He earned the CFL’s Most Outstanding Player Award in 2006 when he led the BC Lions to a 25-14 victory over the Montreal Alouettes in the 94th Grey Cup.
“He did most of his damage at BC,” said Roy Shivers, a former CFL executive who became the first African-American general manager in professional football when the Saskatchewan Roughriders hired him in 1999. “He’s a big-time receiver.”
Simon thanked his parents, Valerie and Geroy Allen, along with his high school coach, Tom Fleming, and Mark Duffner who coached him at Maryland.
“They’ve been great supporters of mine,” said Simon.
Simon was also appreciative of his college teammates including Jermaine Lewis, Scott Milanovich, Chad Scott, Jonathan Grant and Kevin Plank.
Lewis, a Prince George’s County native, was a four-year starter at wide receiver during his tenure at Maryland.
A fifth round selection by the Baltimore Ravens in the 1996 NFL Draft, Lewis spent eight years in the league and won a Super Bowl title with the Ravens in 2001, a game highlighted by his 84-yard kickoff return for a touchdown that helped Baltimore beat the New York Giants, 34-7.
“Jermaine, he was a lightning quick guy and very, very talented,” said Simon.
Milanovich and Scott also played in the NFL while Grant and Plank went on to successful careers in the working world.
Grant currently teaches in the Montgomery County Public Schools system and Plank became the founder, CEO and Chairman of Under Armour.
Plank, a Kensington native, founded Under Armour in 1996 and it’s grown into one of the world’s most profitable sports apparel and merchandise companies.
“He had those leadership qualities and you knew he was going to do something special in life when his football career was over,” Simon said about Plank.
During his tenure at Maryland, Simon finished among the school’s all-time leaders in receptions (185) and receiving yards (2,059) and caught ten career touchdowns.
Simon had 35 receptions for 534 yards and three touchdowns during his senior campaign but amassed 77 receptions for 891 yards and five touchdowns as a sophomore. He also returned a kickoff 94 yards for a score during his sophomore campaign.
“He was one of the most electrifying wide receivers they ever had,” said Johnny Holliday, the longtime radio play-by-play voice of the Maryland Terrapins. “He was always the guy they would go to in clutch situations. He had great hands. He had a great career in the Canadian Football League.”