UNC Hosts FSU Pledge

Florida State verbal commitment Josh Brown received an in-person look at the unique position North Carolina projects him to play within its 4-2-5 defensive scheme on Saturday – the bandit position, a hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker.

“I feel like I’ll fit great at that position, because I have experience at D-end and I play linebacker at Mallard Creek now,” Brown said.

Brown, a 6-foot-3, 207-pounder, began the season at defensive end for football power Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek. During the fifth game, he was moved to linebacker where he recorded seven tackles, a sack, and a pass breakup. Last Friday, the conversion was completed as he started his first game at linebacker.

“You can do more and you can see way more,” Brown said. “I feel like it’s way more fun than playing D-end, because it gives you way more to do with way more opportunity.”

Beyond high school, the move will only help Brown. Most schools, including FSU and UCLA which have offered, are recruiting him as a linebacker.

While visiting Florida State for its victory over Clemson, Brown verbally committed to the Seminoles. However, that doesn’t mean his recruitment is over.

“My commitment is pretty solid,” Brown said. “But I’m still going to take my visits and stuff like that. I talked to the Florida State coaches already about that. They told my dad that it’s okay if I take all my visits.”

Thus, the following Saturday Brown visited FSU’s Atlantic Division rival, Clemson, when the Tigers hosted UNC. And then he ended up in Chapel Hill this past Saturday.

“I’ve always been highly interested in North Carolina,” Brown said. “But still my commitment to Florida State is very solid.”

Saturday’s game was Brown’s second at UNC in as many seasons. Last fall he caught the Tar Heels’ victory over Boston College. The loss this time around didn’t sour Brown’s experience.

“You could tell the fans are very loyal and excited to be at the game,” Brown said. “I tried to pick a game that would be good competition, and basically I did. It was a good atmosphere up there.”

Before kickoff, Brown spoke briefly with Larry Fedora, as well as UNC assistant coaches Gunter Brewer, Vic Koenning, and Ron West.

“They were just saying that they’re kind of rebuilding right now,” Brown said. “They said they need people that can make a difference to come and help North Carolina. They basically told me that my position is going to be open by the time I get there.”

Brown is likely finished visiting schools until after his football season is over since Mallard Creek practices on most Saturdays. The visits he did take were scheduled well in advance and cleared by his high school coaches. If he travels anywhere during the football season, he said it will likely be to FSU.

After the season, Brown said he will visit as many schools as possible.

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