Summers Settling in at Hargrave

CHATHAM, Va. --- For head coach Troy Davis, James Summers conjures up memories of another North Carolina verbal commitment who prepped at Hargrave Military Academy – A.J. Blue.

"[Summers] is the same type of athlete – real physical, real fast," Davis said.

Whereas Blue alternated between quarterback and running back while at Hargrave, Davis plans to use Summers, a 6-foot-3, 205-pounder, almost exclusively as a quarterback. Furthermore, as Hargrave prepares for its season opener on Saturday, Summers will be the starting quarterback.

"One thing I want to say about Jamie Summers: great kid," Davis said. "He's another high character kid that UNC is getting.

"What I like about him [football-wise] is he's very knowledgeable about the offense. He's experienced in running the spread offense. He's one of those guys that coaches like because he helps out the other athletes [with the offense] – he constantly is showing and explaining to them what needs to be done on the field."

Once at UNC, Blue was eventually converted fulltime to tailback. However, Davis believes a different fate awaits Summers.

"I think he can play quarterback with the new coaching staff they have there – the no-huddle spread," Davis said. "I really can see him being a quarterback there and fitting right in."

Summers signed with UNC last February out of Greensboro (N.C.) Page High School. Knowing there was a chance he might not qualify, the Tar Heels' coaching staff put Summers in contact with Davis and made arrangements for Summers to enroll at Hargrave, if necessary.

"I finally found out with the last score [that I wasn't going to qualify]," Summers said. "I called Coach Davis and told him I would like to come [to Hargrave]."

At Hargrave, Summers will work on his test scores (SAT and ACT) as well as attempt to boost his core GPA by retaking classes. If he does what is necessary, he'll be set to enroll at UNC in January.

"If it doesn't work out after the first semester, I'll probably stay for the second semester," Summers said.

Since he failed to qualify, Summers' Letter-of-Intent with UNC is void – virtually restarting his recruitment. Regardless, he has no interest in looking into other schools.

"It's a done deal," Summers said. "Carolina is where I'm going."

Summers says he communicates a lot with Blake Anderson, UNC's offensive coordinator and quarterback coach.

"He just let me know how good of a program it is and how many guys have been successful in it," Summers said. "He even talked about sending his son there after he graduates high school… He told me to keep my head up and just make sure I know what I'm here for and stay focused on that one goal."

Summers arrived in Chatham a week ago and began practicing with his Hargrave teammates last Tuesday.

"Since I've been here, they've been teaching us military ways and military things," Summers said. "It's been pretty good. Now that I realize that I'm here, it's not even a bad situation, because it's going to make me into a better man and help me on into college."

Further easing Summers's mind is how many current and former Tar Heels have been there before him, including A.J. Blue, Zach Brown, Quinton Coples, and Kevin Reddick.

"It makes me feel a lot better," Summers said. "And a couple of those guys are on my Facebook and reached out to me and told me it's a good thing and it will make me a better person in the end and when they got to college it made the transition easier. I'm really glad I came here."

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