Pack Still Leads for Hunter

Cary (NC) defensive lineman Fre'Shad Hunter has attended a couple of camps and one in-state program definitely made a big impression.

Cary (NC) defensive lineman Fre'Shad Hunter has attended a couple of camps and one in-state program definitely made a big impression.

"So far I've been to camps at ECU and Tennessee," said Hunter. "I really enjoyed the ECU camp. It was fun going down there and working with Skip Holtz and his crew. I went to Tennessee a few weeks ago with my coach, and the stadium blew me away. I like the staff over there and the football atmosphere."

Hunter admits that East Carolina wasn't too high on his list before the camp. Now the Pirates are in the mix.

"ECU really moved up," said Hunter. "At the camp, working with coach Hargreaves was great. He was down at Miami and coached a lot of great players who passed through there. I like his coaching style and I like him as a person.

"Coach Holtz sat down and talked with me and my mom about what all ECU has to offer. It's a good school that has been able to compete with a lot of the top teams. They beat West Virginia and Virginia Tech last year, and they compete for the Conference USA title every year."

One of the top defensive linemen in the state, Hunter finished his sophomore season with 89 tackles, including 12 for a loss. As a junior he totaled 38 tackles, six sacks, and eight tackles for a loss as teams ran away from his side of the ball.

At 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds, Hunter plays defensive end, but some project him as a defensive tackle or outside linebacker on the next level. has tabbed him a four-star prospect and the No. 12 defensive tackle in the country.

"Coaches tell me I could end up at a few spots," he said. "Some say I could stay at defensive end, but others think with how much more I can grow I might be a three-technique. I even had a few schools say I could maybe play outside linebacker. That's what I started off playing."

He currently holds offers from NC State, East Carolina, Syracuse, LSU, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, Maryland, and Oregon among others, but isn't ready to name a top five.

"I don't have a top list right now," said Hunter. "I'm getting close to setting up some of my official visits, but I really don't have a top five. I want to make those visits to see what they have to offer.

"I have a few schools I want to make my way to like Florida and LSU. Those trips are in the plans. Florida hasn't offered me officially yet because I haven't visited. Coach Meyer told me that he wanted to see recruits in person before offering so that's a visit I'm going to take."

Does Hunter have a favorite?

"I have to say NC State would be my leader," he stated. "NC State was my first scholarship offer, and they have a great coaching staff over there. They are on the rise over there with coach O'Brien. A lot more schools have offered me now and it's still open for me, but I was holding that NC State offer for a couple of months before other schools offered.

"I still stay in touch with State a lot... my coach talks to them too and they are always asking how I'm doing."

The talented defender has also been keeping a close eye on the Wolfpack's in-state recruiting success. With NC State being only a few miles from his home Hunter has taken several unofficial visits. He's had a chance to become familiar with some of the state's other top players.

"I talked to Rob Crisp back in the spring when we threw the shot put," said Hunter. "I talk to him from time-to-time, and he has committed to State. I've also talked some with Tony Creecy, the wide receiver commitment. We all stay in touch.

"Rob Crisp and Tony Creecy are some of the top athletes around. They are the kind of ingredients NC State is looking to add to get a championship over there. With Rob being the top recruit on the offensive line, I could be a top recruit on the defensive line. Creecy has great hands and speed... it's all about adding weapons. Those recruits have made their class stronger... they are high on my list. I've had some thoughts about all of that."

One factor possibly preventing Hunter from having even more offers is his academic situation. He admits that he had a slow start in the classroom but is putting in the time to qualify academically for the 2010 college football season.

"I picked my academics up real hard my junior year, and I'm close to being back on track," he said. "I had a rocky freshman year... I really wasn't thinking about how much it would hurt me now. It got serious my sophomore year, and I knew I had to pick it up.

"My grades are valuable to my future. I'm entering crunchtime... my senior year. I don't want to end up at a junior college or military school so I'm working hard."

Hunter previously indicated that he may make a summer decision, but it seems like he has now pushed back his timetable.

"I think I'm going to have to make my decision after my senior season," said Hunter. "It's probably going to be around the last game of my senior season. I don't think it will be real close to signing day, but after my senior year.

"The thought process is tougher now with all the offers. I have a lot more to think about and it's serious. I don't want to rush it."

Jr. Film: DE - Fre'Shad Hunter -

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