UNC Offers Va. Defensive Lineman

North Carolina became the latest school to offer Jeremiah Clarke, a 6-foot-5, 275-pound defensive lineman from Alexandria (Va.) Williams, a scholarship on Tuesday.

"According to Coach [Walt] Bell, they watched my film early this morning and the whole coaching staff loved it," Clarke said. "I talked to [Bell] around 2 o'clock. I called him, and him and I and the head coach had a little conversation. That's when they gave me the offer. They want me to come down for a visit to watch a spring practice."

Five other FBS schools have offered Clarke – NC State, Penn State, San Diego State, Toledo, Virginia.

As for the visit invitation, Clarke hasn't set up any firm plans yet, but he intends to accept the visit offer and attend a spring practice. He has made several trips to Maryland, NC State, and Virginia.

For the past several summers, Williams HS has been a regular participant in UNC's 7-on-7 team camp, but Clarke – being a defensive lineman – has never made the trip.

Despite the lack of a visit, Clarke says he knows a good bit about UNC.

"I know it's a good school – academically and everything," Clarke said. "I know it's a good football school, especially if you want to play D-line."

A trio of schools are sticking out for Clarke.

"As of right now, sort of like my top three – but I haven't proclaimed it – would be UVa, Penn State, and NC State," Clarke said. "I just like the relationships I have with the coaches and the programs they have and I've had a lot of visits up there.

"Maybe UNC would be in my top five – I don't know. I'd have to develop a relationship with my recruiter."

Clarke plans to make a verbal commitment at the end of the summer.

"I just want to go into the school year focused on school and football," Clarke said. "I want to commit to get any recruiting pressure off my back. But also, if any injuries happen during the season, I'm covered."

When that decision arrives, Clarke will evaluate each school's location, atmosphere, academics, coaching staff, and defensive scheme. Specifically with the location, he's looking for a school with both a close proximity to his family as well as a tolerable climate.

"I'm looking for a school I can be at for long periods of time without being irritated or homesick," Clarke said.

Clarke played both defensive end and tackle at Williams, collecting 38 tackles and 11.5 sacks as a junior.

"The way our district is ran, they do a lot of up the middle runs," Clarke said. "So they moved me to D-tackle a lot to stop the run."

During his conversation with the UNC coaches on Tuesday, they didn't specify what position he fits at in their 4-2-5 defense.

"I prefer end, but it doesn't matter as long as I get on the field," Clarke said.

Jeremiah Clarke Profile

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