Heels Land Offensive Lineman

Eight days before National Signing Day, North Carolina received a key final piece to its 2014 recruiting class with a commitment from Jared Cohen on Tuesday evening.

Cohen committed to UNC offensive line coach Chris Kapilovic during an in-home visit with fellow UNC assistant coach Keith Gilmore on Tuesday.

"They told me on Sunday that they were coming up on Tuesday," Cohen said. "I knew by then I'd know whether my feelings would change or not from the official visit. I would say this morning I knew that I wanted to commit."

The 6-foot-4, 290-pound offensive guard from Owings Mills (Md.) McDonogh School chose the Tar Heels over Maryland and Penn State.

"We took a couple of pictures -- me, Coach Kap' and Coach Gilmore. We got dinner for them. We sat down and ate. Afterwards I told them I was ready to do it. And then just as a little joke, I had my mom pick up a bottle of sparkling cider, because obviously we couldn't have champagne. We toasted and drank that.

"They were happy beyond belief. They were ecstatic. And then right after that, I got on the phone with Coach [Larry] Fedora and let him know. He was extremely pumped up."

In December, shortly after receiving a scholarship offer from Penn State, Cohen de-committed from Maryland, a school he had been committed to since last February. At that time, he gave his coaches at McDonogh School a list of colleges to send his senior film to. That list included UNC.

"I really enjoyed North Carolina's campus a lot better than Maryland's," Cohen said. "It was extremely beautiful. I liked the way it was set up.

Kapilovic, Cohen, Gilmore at Tuesday night's in-home visit
"On top of that, the relationships that I've built with the UNC players was a lot better than Maryland's. It's just a great group of guys and I felt like I just fit in a lot better."

Thus, Kapilovic began recruiting Cohen only about a month ago and was able to build a relationship and seal the deal in short order.

"[Kapilovic] played a role, but not the main role, because college football is so unpredictable and you can't predict whether that coach is going to be there your entire time there," Cohen said. "But obviously, you're going to want to know your position coach and like him. Him and I hit it off great. We got along great. I think he's going to be able to push me to my maximum potential."

Cohen took his official visit to Chapel Hill with his parents last weekend. He was hosted by North Carolina's starting offensive guards, Caleb Peterson and Landon Turner.

"The visit went very, very, very well," Cohen said. "I love it, but I didn't want to make a spur of the moment decision while I was loving the visit. But [Tuesday] when I woke up, I felt the same way about UNC about the moment I left on Sunday.

UNC is recruiting Cohen as an interior lineman. After playing guard his first two years, Cohen has since started at left tackle for McDonogh.

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He is ranked the No. 33 offensive tackle in the nation by Scout.com.

"I knew it was the place that I wanted to be," Cohen said. "No doubt about it."

Cohen becomes the No. 22 scholarship commitment in UNC's 2014 recruiting class. He's the fourth offensive lineman the Tar Heels have secured in this class, joining Josh Allen, Caleb Samuel and Bentley Spain.

UNC's class will become official on National Signing Day, which is next Wednesday.

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