As a senior at Oscar Smith High School in Chesapeake two years ago, highly recruited quarterback Phillip Sims chose Alabama over several schools -- including Virginia.
Sims, now a rising sophomore, announced in a release on Friday that he was leaving the defending national champions to get closer to his family. And according to reports, Charlottesville could be his destination.
"I want to thank Coach Saban and the coaching staff for being with me and my family at this time. I wouldn't change anything about my decision to come to Alabama and this has been one of the greatest experiences of my life," Sims said in the release. "The reason for me leaving is nothing more than a personal matter. I just need to be closer to home to support my family at this time and that needs to be my priority right now. I would still like to continue my football career, and hopefully I can do that and also be there for my family."
"Phillip has been a great representative of our program and did a great job for us in his two years here," Alabama coach Nick Saban said in the release. "We are sorry to see him leave, but we certainly understand the situation, and everyone here wishes him the best of luck."
The Birmingham News is already reporting that Sims may be interested in transferring to Virginia. Sims initially picked the Crimson Tide over the Cavaliers, along with Georgia, Tennessee, Florida State and Clemson.
Sims was rated as the top high school quarterback recruit in the country by ESPNU in 2010. He was graded as a five-star prospect by Scout.com, and a four-star recruit by both ESPNU and Rivals.com.
After redshirting in 2010, Sims appeared in eight games for Alabama last season as AJ McCarron's back-up. He finished the season 18-of-28 for 163 yards, with a pair of interceptions.