Under head coach Chuck Amato, there have been mixed results when trying to land so-called "legacy" recruits. TE John Ritcher and QB Daniel Evans both boasted ties to the Pack through their famous fathers and ultimately decided to follow in their footsteps to NC State. On the other hand, LB Justin London, son of former Wolfpack DB Tommy London, decided to head west and signed with UCLA. In 2004, the Pack will once again try to land the son of a former State standout, however, despite the ties, TE Jonathan Hannah (6-5, 255 pounds, 4.79-seconds in the 40) of South View High School in Hope Mills, NC says the decision will ultimately be his.
"Sure, my parents are big State fans- especially my mom. But they completely support me in whatever decision I make," said Hannah. They just want what's best for me."
Just as important as Hannah's physical ability is his team-first attitude and desire to do whatever it takes to help his team win. On the field, Hannah can be seen constantly cheering on and congratulating his teammates. That type of attitude can be an infectious positive for any squad and is, at least, partly a driving force behind better than a dozen division one colleges that have offered up scholarships. Through it all, Hannah has maintained a politician-like stance on recruiting with basically every school seemingly still in the race for his commitment.
While the family connections certainly won't hurt the Wolfpack's chances at landing the 4-star prospect and SuperPrep All-American, the most important factor may boil down to the opportunities NC State offers Hannah on the field. He's made no secret about the fact that he's very aware of how teams utilize their TE and, on the surface, it would appear that could bode well for the Wolfpack.
"Ideally, every TE wants to catch the ball as much as they can and State, they really utilize theirs," said Hannah. "Obviously TJ (Williams) can get out and move and that's a big part of that. But that's something that I really enjoy looking at."
Hannah compares well with Williams. Put them in an identical uniform and it would be hard to tell them apart given their size and the way both move so well. It's also no accident that Hannah is reportedly the only TE State has offered this year. While he's had numerous opportunities to see the Wolfpack, Hannah made a return trip for the Miami game this past weekend- his first visit for an NC State game this year. He talked about the trip and the future of Wolfpack football.
"It went great," said Hannah. "I got to listen to coach Amato talk and that was great. We missed the walk of champions though because we got there a little late though. As a team, they have great camaraderie. But during game play, they've made some crucial mistakes that has hurt them and that showed against Miami, the Ohio State game and the Carolina game. But they're coming together and State will be a force to be reckoned with for years to come."
Hannah has already made official visits to Clemson and Virginia Tech with Florida State and Penn State looking strong to get the third and fourth slots. A trio of schools will battle it out for his fifth and final official visit.
"I'll be going to Florida State for an official visit and Penn State right now. The other one, I'll take after the season. I might let my official visit to State be my fifth visit along with either Tennessee or Carolina. I haven't set a date with State or anything but coach Cignetti said he wanted to set it up after the season so they could spend more time with me."