First-year football coach Larry Fedora implored those at his opening press conference Dec. 9 to look at his wife. He said that was enough evidence to prove that he was a good recruiter.
He submitted a second piece of proof Wednesday, although he was only given three weeks to pull together his first class.
Twenty-three players signed to be Tar Heels on National Signing Day. The class ranks No. 42 in the nation and sixth in the ACC, according to Rivals.com.
“This is a very exciting day at the University of North Carolina,” Fedora said. “We just accepted 23 guys into the Tar Heel family.”
Normally a hectic day for schools across the country, UNC had a fairly calm Signing Day.
The only shock was a good one.
On Wednesday, the Tar Heels received a commitment from wide receiver Quinshad Davis, South Carolina’s Gatorade Player of the Year and a Rivals.com All-American. Davis visited two weekends ago even though UNC got involved in his recruitment later than any other program.
“I could tell when he came that weekend, obviously the school sold itself, and the kid fell in love and he decided,” Fedora said. “You could see it almost in him that he wanted to be a Tar Heel.”
UNC also inked two quarterbacks to throw to Davis. Fedora’s pass-heavy spread offense was a selling point that piqued the interest of both.
Kanler Coker transferred to Flowery Branch High School his senior season to run the spread offense there. James Summers, who led undefeated Page High School to a state championship, flipped his commitment from N.C. State to UNC following a meeting with Fedora.
“When James finally came to campus, he fell in love,” Fedora said.
“When he saw what we’re going to do offensively, his eyes lit up.”
Fedora said that offensive line recruiting was a point of emphasis for this class, and linemen Jon Heck, J.J. Patterson, Caleb Peterson and John Ferranto all signed with UNC. Patterson is a Rivals.com four-star recruit and Peterson followed Fedora to UNC after previously committing to Southern Miss. Wide receiver Kendrick Singleton was also committed to Fedora at Southern Miss.
Only six players in the class come from the state. Nine of North Carolina’s top 10 prospects signed with schools out-of-state and Fedora said improving in-state recruiting will be a point of emphasis for next year’s class.
In total, only three players previously committed to UNC went elsewhere. With a full class now in the fold, Fedora said he’s happy to move on with what he has.
“There were 14 kids committed when we got here, and some of them stayed and some of them didn’t,” Fedora said.
“You never worry about the kids that don’t come, you just worry about the ones you get.”
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