Russell Bonds with Players on Visit

Christian Russell's North Carolina official visit provided the Tar Heel commitment an opportunity to spend time with current players and see the campus life from their perspective.

"I had a good time [and] I enjoyed myself," Russell said. "This time I got to spend more time with the players and really get to know some of them. They were telling me stuff about the school and showing me around. I got to get more of a feel of the school from the players' [perspective] – not just from the coaches."

Although Ethan Farmer served as his host, Russell said he bonded with just about every player the 5-foot-11, 221-pound linebacker from Raeford (N.C.) Hoke County came in contact with.

"Basically all of [the players] are cool," Russell said. "I already felt I was part of the team.

"It was fun. We went out, played some games, went around town, and I got to see the dorms – I liked the dorms because they're like mini apartments."

When he wasn't with the players, Russell was typically spending time with the coaching staff, including a Saturday meeting with Art Kaufman, UNC's linebackers coach.

"We went into the room and we were talking about the 4-3 defense and how they check down and make all their checks," Russell said. "He was showing me some film on their run defense and stuff like that. We started talking about how he likes his linebackers to be fast."

Before ending his official visit on Sunday morning, Russell met individually with Butch Davis.

"He asked me what I thought of the school," Russell said. "He said that he liked me and he said he thinks I'm a great player and all the coaches are thrilled to have me. He was talking to me about my grades and telling me to keep trying."

Russell is still working on becoming academically qualified.

"My grades are good, I just have to [receive a qualifying score in] the ACT [or] SAT," Russell said. "I took the SAT and I didn't [receive a qualifying score] and I haven't taken the ACT, but I'm going to be taking that in February. If I [receive a qualifying score], I'll be cleared."

Russell has been verbally committed to UNC since early July and has made countless trips to the campus since.

"[The official visit] made me feel like I made the right choice," Russell said. "Every time I go out there, I feel at home. What I did with the players and coaches, it just made me feel like that's where I'm supposed to be at."

Christian Russell Profile

Inside Carolina Top Stories