DeAndre Thompkins is emerging as one of the state's top junior prospects and all of the schools on Tobacco Road are making a strong push for him.
North Carolina and NC State have both offered the Swansboro athlete as have Penn State and several FCS programs. So far the 6-foot-1, 170-pound junior has visited North Carolina, NC State and Appalachian State. He is planning to visit Penn State over Thanksgiving weekend.
Swansboro lost their last game of the season and that defeat kept them out of the playoffs. Thompkins grew by leaps and bounds on the field, developing into one of the state's top junior recruits.
Thompkins visited NC State for Homecoming weekend. With the Pack suffering a 33-6 loss to Virginia, it certainly wasn't the best atmosphere for a recruiting trip. However, Thompkins was quick to point out that one game didn't change his thoughts about the Wolfpack.
"Every team has that one game where they weren't ready or focused. It doesn't shift my thought on their school at all. Going into the locker room and seeing how their players took that loss, how their staff took it, it showed me how much they love the game of football," he said.
Off the field NC State showed him some positive things as well. He said the school's environment made him feel comfortable.
"They're also really helpful talking about their (academic) programs. They give you a lot of good information."
What did he think of North Carolina?
"I loved their staff. They're down to earth and they're very available," he said.
The Heels are unique in one regard. They are leaving open the possibility of giving Thompkins a look on defense. Other schools seem intent on putting him at receiver and giving him a look as a return man.
Finally, what about Penn State? Will the Big Ten school be a truly serious option for Thompkins in spite of their troubles over the past year?
"Oh definitely. I just like their staff. I talked to Coach Roof and some of their coaches. I love the way they stuck with their team throughout what happened. I like the way they want to rebuild and put all that behind them."