Heck '100-Percent' Committed

Jon Heck attended his first game at Kenan Stadium a couple weeks ago, making his first visit since committing to North Carolina.

"It was a lot of fun," Heck said. "I've never seen the game atmosphere, so that was great to see. It was really nice to come and visit when I wasn't so much evaluating. I was more relaxed. I had a chance to enjoy it more."

With that said, Heck saw a role reversal. The 6-foot-6, 270-pound offensive tackle from Jacksonville (Fla.) Bolles was the recruiter, instead of being the recruit.

"I got a chance to talk to some running backs that were visiting and I was talking to other recruits," Heck said. "I was telling them that UNC is a great place and a great school that they should go to. I was trying to help out in any way I can."

Although his stay was an unofficial visit, Heck remained on campus as long as most of the official visitors that weekend. With Bolles on a bye week, he arrived in Chapel Hill on Friday. After watching UNC defeat Wake Forest, he spent Saturday night with several Tar Heel players before leaving the following morning.

"I love Chapel Hill the town," Heck said. "So we spent a lot of time around the town. And I loved hanging out with the players after the game – I got to see what the actual college life is like, outside of the football program."

The players Heck hung out with the most were offensive linemen Landon Turner and James Hurst.

"They're a great group of guys," Heck said. "That was one of the main reasons I committed was because there's such a great group of guys. I can tell they're definitely people I want to be teammates with and they're really good players so I could really learn from them."

Given his fondness for the university and his future teammates, he said a dramatic coaching staff change would be disappointing but wouldn't alter his commitment status.

"I absolutely love the coaching staff that's there now," Heck said. "I have so much respect for Coach [Everett] Withers – I think he's a great coach. I love Coach [Sam] Pittman – he's the best offensive line coach I've ever been around. So I'm hoping the Coach Withers could stay and the whole staff could stay, but if something was to happen and they were to make a change, I still would 100-percent stay."

Heck plans to schedule his actual official visit to UNC during a weekend in January.

"My dad, he's a coach of the [Jacksonville] Jaguars," Heck said. "We want to take [the official visit] on a weekend he has off. We're assuming the season will be over for him by then, unless they go far in the playoffs. But we want to go a weekend he has off, because we want the whole family to go."

With a 2-6 record, the Jaguars' hopes to even make the playoffs aren't looking too bright.

Meanwhile, Heck's senior football season is going strong. Bolles will play its regular season finale Friday against cross-town rival Jacksonville (Fla.) Episcopal, which features fellow UNC commitment Shakeel Rashad, and has already qualified for the FHSAA 4A playoffs with an 8-1 record.

"I think this team can go very far," Heck said. "We have a lot of talent and we have some of the best coaches around. We have some young guys, but we've always been a team that gets better as the season goes on. By the time we hit the playoffs, our offense is running smoothly and we're executing well. So I think we have the potential to go all the way."

Bolles already knows its first round opponent – Bushnell (Fla.) South Sumter – which it will host next Friday. A win could setup a rematch against the only team to defeat Bolles in the regular season, Jacksonville (Fla.) Raines.

After sitting out his entire junior season with a fractured foot, Heck isn't taking his senior season for granted.

"It's great to be back," Heck said. "I really miss this. There's just nothing like being out there under the Friday night lights. I've just been savoring every chance I'm on the field.

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