Rayner Narrowing Focus

Keilin Rayner has narrowed his focus to four schools.

"I'm considering North Carolina, Duke, ECU, and Ohio State," Rayner said. "They're pretty much my final four schools. Pretty much, I like how all of them are close to home, other than Ohio State. The guys I've met that are going there I get along with. And they are all good opportunities."

UNC emerged as Rayner's favorite school during the fall. However, the 6-foot-3, 220-pounder from Leland (N.C.) North Brunswick now lacks a leader.

"[My feelings] have changed because of the [new] staff and the defense they're going to run," Rayner said.

Rayner says distance from his home will play a major role in his final decision.

"I want the people that have supported me throughout my career to be able to see me play," Rayner said.

With that in mind, Ohio State has a major disadvantage.

"Coach [Everett] Withers is the one that's recruiting me from there," Rayner said. "An official won't hurt. I'm just going there just to see how it is."

Rayner is scheduled to officially visit East Carolina this coming weekend, Duke the following weekend, and Ohio State the final weekend of January.

In early October, Rayner officially visited UNC, under the previous regime. He made an unofficial visit to campus this past Saturday to meet the Tar Heels' new coaching staff.

Accompanied by his coach Garry Bishop, Rayner arrived on campus Saturday earlier than the other recruits who were also visiting. The majority of his time on campus was spent with Vic Koenning, who is heading up Rayner's recruitment for UNC.

"[Koenning] is a really cool guy," Rayner said. "He came from Illinois. We're still trying to build a relationship.

"He brought us in the team room and we watched film. He showed me film of places where he coached – the defense he is going to use. He showed me the big plays the defense makes and where I'm going to play. "

In UNC's new scheme, the coaching staff projects Rayner as a ‘Bandit.'

"They said I would be an outside linebacker that would be moved down to defensive end," Rayner said.

Rayner has played both defensive end and linebacker in high school. He began his prep career at D-end, but early in his junior season he was moved to linebacker.

"I think [the Bandit] position will make it easier to get a free release," Rayner said. "I would be allowed to do a lot of different things – drop into coverage, rush the passer."

Rayner's stay concluded with UNC's basketball game against Boston College, which was the first college basketball game he's ever attended.

"It was pretty cool," Rayner said. "The student section is pretty cool."

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