Chaffin Returns to UNC

CHARLOTTE, N.C. --- A week after snow postponed North Carolina's Junior Day and forced Brian Chaffin to stay the night in Chapel Hill, the 6-foot-2, 280-pound center returned to UNC for the makeup Junior Day.

"It was definitely worth the second trip back," Chaffin said. "That was an unbelievable visit. There weren't a lot of prospects there – there were a lot of guys that they were really trying to target. So it was fun, because we got to meet some of the best recruits in the state. Obviously, [the UNC coaching staff] put on a show, it was a lot of fun, and guys had a great time. They did a good job of creating excitement around the program and showing what it could be like if you want to have fun at Carolina."

Accompanied by a Charlotte (N.C.) Christian assistant coach, Chaffin arrived in Chapel Hill an hour before the junior day began.

"They brought us down the hill and we got off the cart with a red carpet, but it was a blue carpet," Chaffin said. "These two [graduate assistants] were asking us questions, like ‘Are you excited to be here?' And then Coach [Larry] Fedora met us at the door and shook our hands. And then they let us in, almost like it was a VIP club. It was pretty fun.

"After that, we watched a team hype video. Then we hung out in the players' lounge and then got something to eat. After that, we did player introduction things – they just called us out to the coaches and parents that were there. And then after that we went into the locker room and tried on jerseys. We talked to some of the guys and talked about all the gear that they get.

"And then we headed over to the Dean Dome. They took us onto the floor before the game and the students were chanting ‘Future Tar Heels.' I thought that was pretty cool. The atmosphere, obviously playing Duke, was unbelievable. That was a great experience that not a lot of people are going to be able to do in their lifetime."

UNC's come-from-behind victory capped the night's events in unmatched fashion.

"When UNC started coming back, the place started getting more amped," Chaffin said. "As soon as that buzzer hit zero, it was pandemonium. People running out [on the court and] going crazy. It was just really exciting seeing everybody so excited. And then Franklin Street after was crazy. It was great to see how the students act after a great win – I'm sure they do that for the football team, too."

As a whole, the visit was another effective experience for Chaffin.

"It was definitely all positive things," Chaffin said. "It was exciting to see they have a strong fan base that's willing to come out and support their teams. They're great in all sports, which I think is important because it gives you something to do in the [football] off-season. The coaches showed that they know how to have fun – they're going to beat your tail, but they want to have fun."

However, Chaffin won't alter his initial plan: he's going to wait until after the Spring Evaluation Period to name favorite schools.

"These visits are great, but a lot of these schools have great visits," Chaffin said. "Obviously, [UNC's Junior Day] was top notch. But I just want to sit back and observe. I still have a couple visits to take. I'll sit down with my parents and my coach after that and evaluate where I'm at."

Chaffin visited Virginia Tech on Sunday and is scheduled to travel to Wake Forest this Saturday. He also is strongly considering going to Duke on March 8.

Chaffin could play offensive guard, but most schools are recruiting him as a center.

"When you look at Brian, he's like the security blanket," Christian head coach Jason Estep said. "This will be his fourth year playing – two years at tackle, he just finished his first year at center, and he'll play center this year. He's the quarterback of our offensive line. He makes all of our checks up front.

"His desire to be the best is off the charts, which really makes him be one of the best centers in the country. Whether it's in the weight room, on the field, or in the meeting room, he expects a lot out of himself and he really expects a lot out of the guys that he's with. He's just an unbelievable leader for us."

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