Tucker Moving Closer to Decision

Carl Tucker is moving closer to deciding between two schools.

"Tennessee and North Carolina are my two favorites," Tucker said. "As of right now, I'd say Tennessee is the leader, but I want to see more of the campuses at both schools [before deciding]."

Tucker, a 6-foot-2, 213-pounder from Cornelius (N.C.) Hough, credits Tennessee's "football atmosphere" for its edge.

"It's a football school," Tucker said of Tennessee. "Regardless of who they play, it's a loud game. I had this one conversation with Coach [Mark] Elder and we talked for a good 20 minutes about everything so I have more of an idea about their school. I have to do that with Coach [Gunter] Brewer - that way we can have that same conversation. I feel like I'm real close with Coach [Butch] Jones and Coach Elder. When I go there, I feel like they want me, because everybody there knows my name."

Both schools are recruiting Tucker as an athlete.

"I have more fun at receiver, but I can play defense too," Tucker said.

Corey Bell, Tucker's teammate, is also edging closer to making a verbal commitment himself. Duke and UNC are his favorites.

"We might [commit] at the same time, I'm not sure," Tucker said. "I don't think our decisions will be affected by the other, because we have our own preferences [and] we have our different reasons on why we like certain teams. So, he might go one place and I might go to the other, but if we go to the same college it would just be a bonus."

Between now and when he makes a verbal commitment, Tucker plans to visit both UNC and Tennessee – likely for a spring practice – where he hopes to receive an in-depth view of each campus. Nothing has been scheduled for either trip.

In the past few weeks, Tucker has attended junior days at both schools. Most recently, Tucker visited UNC. He attended the Tar Heel Junior Day last week.

"It was awesome," Tucker said of the UNC visit. "I liked the setup and everything of how they made you feel like a superstar. I'm a Carolina basketball fan, so [the game] was definitely fun to me watching them win."

The UNC coaches shined a Hollywood-like spotlight on the visiting recruits when they arrived.

"They had you come down on a Carolina Blue carpet," Tucker said. "They had two people and they had a camera, and they were interviewing you like you were a celebrity – that was pretty cool. And then they had these two security guards and they opened the doors for you. Once you come in, everybody was clapping for you and shaking your hand. Everybody was taking pictures."

During dinner, Tucker spoke at length with Mitch Mason, UNC's team chaplain, and a former college player. He also had conversations with Gunter Brewer, his primary recruiter, throughout the event.

"[Brewer] just said he wants me to come down there and he asked me how I was doing – small stuff like that," Tucker said.

Being a UNC basketball fan, one of the highlights of the visit came at the end of the night when Tucker was treated to the basketball game against Duke.

"I stayed for the whole thing – I was not leaving early," Tucker said. "It was my first college basketball game and we were standing up the whole time. The only time we sat down was during the timeouts. It was a fun game to go to. "

When the clock struck zero, Tucker's experience didn't end.

"Of course I rushed the court," Tucker said. "It was really fun for me. I was jumping around with everybody and having fun. That was the first time I stormed the court or field or anything. That was a good experience."

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