This Month’s Top Student:
Brett Simpson Recent Grades:
First Place Open Men’s, NSSA Southwest Conference No. 10 event Remarks:
It’s an all-too-familiar story: accomplished 12th-grader burns out six months before the finish line, starts cutting classes and letting his grades slip, then snaps out of it moments before the diploma’s yanked out of his hand. Just ask Huntington Beach High School star Brett Simpson, who came down with a severe case of "Senioritis" this year both in class and at the NSSA Open Season events. Simpson had a solid GPA and a stranglehold on the Open Men’s title by December, but an inflexible English teacher and a travel bug put both accomplishments in the recycle bin. "I don’t know, I guess I just got bored," says Simpson. "I wanted to go somewhere." But instead of following the path of most wayward Seniors to an extended spring break in Boca Raton, Simpson bolted to Oz and gave himself a head start on the World Qualifying Series. "I learned a lot on that trip," he says. "Definitely got schooled at Margaret’s and Newcastle. It’s doable, but you just have to be ready. I mean, there’s no need to rush it." The only problem was, he already had rushed it, which translated to tons of makeup work in a homeschool program and no chance of winning the Open Men’s title. Still, the news hardly swayed Brett’s new determination to end his amateur career on a healthy note. He’s back on pace with his schoolwork and will be graduating in June (and also be competing for HB High School in the Nationals). And, in late April, he surfed his last regular-season NSSA to a first-place finish. The Oceanside victory was his third of the year and put him in second in the final rankings, despite three no-shows. Now, with his Senioritis cured and varsity status reinstated, Simpson faces only one more obstacle before his proper metamorphosis into pro-hood. "I just want to blow up at Nationals," he says. "That’d be sick."