After attending Fedora’s Freak Show, Pete Leota says he is now favoring North Carolina.
“I feel really good about the school and I put them as my leading school,” the 6-foot-4, 314-pound, Asheville (N.C.) offensive lineman said.
Although Leota enjoyed the Freak Show – the portion he was actually able to experience – it was a pre-camp activity that catapulted the Tar Heels to the top. Leota, who admittedly was concerned about the potential fallout from UNC’s Notice of Allegations, was given a meeting with Bubba Cunningham, the school’s athletic director.
“He talked about the school and just telling me that everything will be good with the football team relating to the academic scandal,” Leota said.
Fedora’s Freak Show concluded with the customary “Who’s Next?” – a ceremony where recruits publicly declare their commitment to UNC. The event yielded two commitments (Tomon Fox and Luke Elder). Leota is unsure if he would have made it three.
“I wouldn’t really know what I would have done, because I wasn’t there,” Leota said. “I had gone inside with the trainers, because I started vomiting. I was dehydrated and had a headache. I was just tired because I went to a team camp that was three days long and I came straight [to UNC without rest].”
Regardless, the timing of UNC’s rise is crucial. Leota, who says he’s also strongly considering South Carolina and Virginia Tech, figures to make a verbal commitment by the end of July.
After returning from a vacation in Maine in early July, Leota will resume visiting schools. No dates have been scheduled, but Auburn, Georgia, UNC, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia Tech are the destinations under consideration.
If/when he returns to UNC, Leota – and his grandparents – hopes to explore more of the academic side of UNC. The absence of an academic related tour was the only negative of Leota’s Freak Show experience – save for the dehydration incident.
“Everything went good at the Freak Show,” Leota said. “I got to hang out with the commits and got to know them a little bit. I loved the atmosphere down there. It was great to see so many recruits showing out.”
Before meeting with Cunningham, Leota, who was accompanied by his brother Andrew and his grandparents, met with Chris Kapilovic - who is not only UNC’s offensive line coach, but he has also taken the reins of Leota’s recruitment.
“Coach Kap talked about the school and the NCAA,” Leota said. “I felt a lot better after talking to him and the athletic director.”
To say that Leota and Kapilovic have remained in contact since the Freak Show would be an understatement.
“Let’s see, we talked [Sunday] and Saturday and Friday and I think last Monday and Tuesday,” Leota said. “It’s just little stuff, like Maine and family and then the new commitment, Chazz Surratt.”
More importantly, Kapilovic has expressed to Leota that even though UNC has secured commitments from three offensive linemen the Tar Heels still have a spot
UNC Leading for Leota As Decision Nears
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