Pack Still in it for Russell?

Pack Pride has the latest on Raeford (NC) Hoke County linebacker Christian Russell's interest in NC State.

More than a month after he visited NC State, Christian Russell is still high on the in-state school.

At 6-0 and 210-pounds Russell is one of the top defensive prospects in North Carolina for the class of 2011 and the Wolfpack has made him a priority at linebacker. Only time will tell whether NC State is in the running over the long haul but it seems as though the Pack has a great shot now.

"We had a school trip up to NC State and the whole team went," Russell said, remembering the trip that he spoke to Pack Pride about more than a month ago.

"We walked around and I had a chance to meet with the head coach and all the other coaches. We got to watch them practice and see how they do things. We saw the weight room and it was all real nice."

Russell said he has been in touch with the Wolfpack since that last trip to Raleigh. So far the coaching staff has done a good job of building a case for the school and explaining why the school would be a good fit for Russell.

"NC State is a really good school and they've got real nice facilities. Their weight room is real nice and I like the players and the coaches. It seems like a nice school to be at and they offer you a nice education."

Other than NC State, Russell has received offers from North Carolina, Alabama, Kentucky, Georgia, Duke, UCLA and Wake Forest. That's some pretty stiff competition, and the Tar Heels have been at or near the top of his list for a while now. Despite that, NC State is a factor and the longer he lists the Pack the better their chances become.

Perhaps the biggest news from Russell's most recent conversation with Pack Pride is that he no longer listed North Carolina as his number one school. Of course, history has proven that these things can change on a day to day basis, and sometimes prospects do like hold back in interviews.

"I don't have any favorites. I'm open right now," he said. "I'm just chillin'. I'm not in a rush to make any decisions."

Russell is rated a three star prospect and the No. 27 outside linebacker in the nation by

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