"They invited me up there," Byrd said. "They showed me around and I got to meet Coach [Seth] Littrell, Coach ‘Heck' [Keith Heckendorf], and Coach [Larry] Fedora. They're all great guys. I really liked the vibe I was getting from them. They seemed like great men and my parents thought that as well."
Byrd returned to Chapel Hill a couple of weeks later for a more thorough visit.
"We didn't get to see the dorms and stuff during the first visit," Byrd said. "And I got to sit down and talk with Coach Heck some more. He said he wanted to come see me throw before he offered."
Initially, Heckendorf planned to wait until Veterans' spring practice began in May to evaluate Byrd. However, they were able to work it out so that Byrd could throw in front of Heckendorf last Tuesday.
"I threw for him and he liked what he saw," Byrd said. "And then he made it official and gave me the offer.
"He thinks that I fit well into the offense. Here at Veterans, we run a spread just like UNC does. What I liked about what he said about me was he saw me as a passer first, runner second. He sees me as a quarterback who can use his legs to get out trouble – extend plays – and has the ability to make all the throws I need to make."
Byrd's stats certainly support those remarks. As a sophomore in his second season as starter, he threw for 1,350 yards and nine touchdowns while rushing for 300 yards and five scores.
Byrd couldn't have been happier with the offer.
"It's definitely a beautiful campus," Byrd said. "The coaches are great. I just felt comfortable there – so did my parents. My mom actually really liked it. I know the coaches are going to recruit great guys to be around. And also the academics – they have a great medical program there – is definitely a big plus. It's definitely probably top five or top three right now."
Byrd doesn't have a set top five schools list.
Charlotte, Duke, Illinois, and NC State are the other FBS schools that have offered Byrd.
Wisconsin also sent a coach to Veterans to evaluate Byrd last week. On Friday, Mike Bobo, Georgia's offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach, will watch Byrd throw. Also, several coaches, including Heckendorf, will line the sidelines during Veterans' spring practice.
Bobo's visit is significant because Byrd grew up a Bulldogs fan.
"I'm definitely a Georgia fan and so are a lot of my friends, but I'm definitely open to more options other than Georgia," Byrd said.
In addition to UNC, Byrd has visited Duke, NC State, and South Carolina, as well as a couple visits to Georgia. This summer he's considering trips to Notre Dame and Oklahoma.