Hughes Nearing Decision

SPARTANBURG, S.C. --- Mike Hughes still plans to enroll in college in January. Thus, he’s playing against the clock as he mulls over his final three schools – Florida, North Carolina, and NC State.

“I’ll make a decision sometime next week,” Hughes said. “Right now, I haven’t decided on [how], yet. Maybe I’ll do like a press conference or something. But I haven’t really decided, yet.

“I’m just focused on the Shrine Bowl this week – trying to get another win [because] obviously I just won a state championship. Now I just want to go out by representing my state.”

Hughes, a 5-foot-10, 180-pound athlete from New Bern (N.C.), has taken official visits to each of his finalists and still doesn’t claim a leader.

“I’m still kind of deciding from those three,” Hughes said. “Maybe next week I’ll really sit down and start really narrowing things down.”

Besides not being an in-state school, one of the obvious differences between Florida and the other two finalists is the Gators recently changed head coaches. When Hughes officially visited Gainesville, Will Muschamp headed the program. Florida has since replaced him with Jim McElwain.

“It doesn’t really affect things,” Hughes said. “I’ve spoken with the [new] coach, but I don’t really know him well. Hopefully, I can try to get to know him a lot and see what they run and see if I can fit in.”

Hughes is plenty familiar with UNC’s Larry Fedora and NC State’s Dave Doeren.

On Thursday, Fedora visited with Hughes at his high school.

“Aside from football, he talked to me about life and just getting a great education,” Hughes said.

Hughes also met with NC State representatives recently.

“NC State came by my school Friday and then they were at my game [later that night],” Hughes said.

A week prior, Hughes received an in-home visit from Dan Disch, his UNC primary recruiter. According to Hughes, the two communicate regularly on the phone and through social media.

“Obviously, they want me,” Hughes said. “He wants me to go wherever I’m comfortable – no pressure. He’s a great guy and it’s definitely somewhere I can see myself playing.”

Hughes quarterbacked New Bern to an undefeated season, which ended with a victory in the NCHSAA 4A State title game on Friday night. However, he is listed as a defensive back on NC’s Shrine Bowl roster. Since reporting for the Shrine Bowl, Hughes has attended both quarterback and defensive back meetings.

Mike Hughes Profile

Inside Carolina Top Stories