Cody Simon Creating His Own Name, Path

April 22, 2019
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Cody Simon‍ is no different than scores of younger brothers and deals with the scenario the same way many others do.

“It’s an everyday part of my life,” Simon says. “I’m used to it now.”

Simon gets asked about his older brother often and probably gets compared to him even more, not to mention getting called “Shayne” on virtually a daily basis.

Even a reporter doing a story on what it’s like to follow an older brother at one school and potentially another inevitably slips up once and calls him “Shayne.”

But Cody Simon is much more than Shayne Simon’s younger brother.

And Notre Dame is doing everything it can to convince the 2020 New Jersey linebacker it understands that.

“They told me they weren’t recruiting me because of Shayne,” says Cody, whose brother is entering his second season playing defense for the Irish.

“They wanted to make it clear that I was being recruited for me and it was my recruitment. They installed that in me and made it clear I was the recruit and it wasn’t about Shayne or anybody else, just me.”

Notre Dame may have some advantages by already having successfully recruited Shayne as a safety/linebacker in the Class of 2018. It probably helped from a comfort standpoint when Cody recently visited South Bend, but the Irish know that connection alone, won’t be nearly enough to land Cody.

“Being with him is great, he’s my brother, I always like to be with him,” Cody explains.

The advantages of being with Shayne seem to outweigh the cons, but that doesn’t mean a school like Penn State, Duke or Stanford couldn’t prove to be a better option.

“He can help me get through tough times and the hard parts of a new school,” says Cody, noting that Shayne has done that pretty much his entire life.

“Also, continuing being called my brother’s name and all of that other stuff. At the end of the day, it’s still a school and still a football team. I don’t really take that into account.”

Shayne’s advice regarding the recruiting process was for Cody to think about himself.

“Really, what he told me was to just have fun,” Cody explains. “Don’t think about him when I’m doing my recruitment. ‘Just think about yourself, what you need and what you want to do.’ Don’t make a decision because of him and I really try to do that with my process.”

While Notre Dame and Michigan were battling it out during Shayne’s high-profile recruitment, Cody was taking mental notes in the background.

“One thing I really noticed is that it really is a business,” he says. “This whole entire system is about picking the school that’s right for you and not the coach or the system because all of that stuff can change. It’s the school and where you can see yourself for four years. I think that’s one of the most important things I saw.”

Even before Shayne had departed St. Peter’s Prep in Jersey City, head coach Rich Hansen had pegged Cody as the future of the program.

While Shayne starred as a safety/outside linebacker at The Prep, the 6-foot-2, 215-pound Cody has always been an inside backer.

“He’s more used to playing outside, playing out in space,” says Cody. “I like playing in the box a little more. I feel like that’s more home for me. I just like it better. I could play both, but I just like playing inside more.”

And now, Shayne could be following in Cody’s footsteps for a change as Irish defensive coordinator Clark Lea has talked about moving him inside, the spot where Notre Dame has always envisioned Cody.

Whether he ends up picking Notre Dame or not, Cody Simon will make a name for himself.

In fact, he already has.

 
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