The class of 2007 will likely go down as one of the deepest classes ever for the state of North Carolina. Talent abounds from nearly every corner of the state and Pack Pride breaks down 70 of those special athletes as we present our annual look at the best North Carolina has to offer. Today, we rate prospects 31-40.
40. S/LB Matt Thompson...6-1, 195 pounds, 4.6-seconds in the 40...E Alamance HS, Mebane, NC
Notes...Thompson is a hard-hitting prospect that could project as a safety or LB. Has earned an offer from Georgia Tech but he favors NC State over Auburn, Clemson, East Carolina and Maryland. Grades are a slight concern. Somewhat of a ‘tweener prospect.
39. CB Michael Bowman...5-11, 165 pounds, 4.65-seconds in the 40...Anson County HS, Wadesboro, NC
Notes...One of three solid D-1 kids from Anson County. Do-it-all athlete who probably best projects at CB. Likely too small for RB. Will need to get faster and stronger to please Steve Spurrier since he's committed to South Carolina.
38. OG Henry Lawson...6-4, 270 pounds, 5.4-seconds in the 40...Charlotte (NC) Catholic HS
Notes...OL that can be dominant at times. Plays with nasty streak and moves fairly well. Helped pave the way for Catholic's 3A state title. Lawson impressed the NC State coaches at camp, offered and he committed to them shortly thereafter.
37. LB Jonathan Smith...6-2, 195 pounds, 4.6-seconds in the 40...Hillside HS, Durham, NC
Notes...Teammate of all-american Greg Little. Big hitter that tallied nearly 100 tackles as a junior. Could play safety on next level but LB more likely. Earned an offer from UNC earlier in the spring and committed to the Heels in April.
36. CB Justin Byers...6-0, 175 pounds, 4.5-seconds in the 40...Vance HS, Charlotte, NC
Notes...Byers was a big playmaker for Vance as a junior with three picks and two punt return touchdowns. Has offer from NC State and likes them as well as UNC, Clemson, Virginia, Georgia and Georgia Tech. Speed is somewhat of a concern for the CB spot. Could grow into safety.
35. OL Justin Whaley...6-4, 265 pounds, 5.1-seconds in the 40...Hunt HS, Wilson, NC
Notes...Whaley stars on the DL for Hunt but will play OG for NC State. In the mold of former Wolfpack DT/OL Shane Riggs. Moves very well and impresses on film. Grew up a huge State fan and committed to NC State after camping with the Pack earlier this summer.
34. DL Tristan Dorty...6-1, 230 pounds, 4.7-seconds in the 40...W Rowan HS, Mt Ulla, NC
Notes...Impressive defensive end that has earned offers from Virginia and Wake Forest. Has a non-stop motor and makes plays all over the field. Looked particularly impressive at Shrine Bowl combine. Favors UNC, NC State, Wake Forest, Virginia, Clemson and Virginia Tech.
33. S Emanuel Davis...5-11, 190 pounds, 4.5-seconds in the 40...Manteo (NC) HS
Notes....Davis is a player we really liked. He is "the man" for Manteo and the centerpiece of their offense. Has good speed is ultra-athletic and versatile enough to help out at a number of positions. Reportedly made an early soft commit to ECU but apparently reneged after earning an offer from UNC. He then wasted no time in committing to the Heels.
32. WR Jason Barnes...6-4, 195 pounds, 4.7-seconds in the 40...Independence HS, Charlotte, NC
Notes...Barnes is a tall, rangy target that will likely put up big numbers with teammate QB DJ McFadden. Possession-type receiver that can use his size to his advantage. Not particularly fast but will be a handful for smaller DB's. Favors UNC and South Carolina and both have offered.
31. OL Doug Weaver...6-6, 285 pounds, 5.5-seconds in the 40...Person HS, Roxboro, NC
Notes...Weaver has a huge frame with a lot of potential. Must improve technique and quickness but has the tools to emerge as a solid division one offensive lineman. Originally committed to Duke but backed off that and is now verbally committed to Wake Forest.