Dunlap Has UNC No. 1

North Carolina remains at the top of the list for defensive tackle Marlon Dunlap after this weekend's family visit.

Marlon Dunlap made his fourth visit to North Carolina on Saturday, but it was his parents’ first to the school.

“Oh, they loved it down there, man,” Dunlap said. “They really loved it. They were really impressed by everything that Carolina did and Carolina offered for me. They absolutely enjoyed the whole visit.”

By making such a strong impression on Dunlap’s parents UNC’s chances for the 6-foot-4, 275-pound defensive tackle from Charlotte (N.C.) West have continued to increase.

“It’s a big thing,” Dunlap said. “That basically puts Carolina at my No. 1. They know that it’s easy access for them to come see the game, because I won’t be so far away. And they could pop up any time. It’s basically easier on them than, say, a Florida school.

“I love that they love it, because I like it, too. I love the coaches. I love it down there. It’s basically like a family down there – that’s what I see. That’s basically why I like Carolina so much – they brought me in like I was family and helped me when nobody else would.”

Dunlap has had a high interest in UNC since the spring. With his parents now on board, he has begun to contemplate a decision timeframe. Midseason is what he’s targeting.

“Basically, I just want to enjoy my recruiting process,” Dunlap said. “It’s now just beginning, because I had grade [question marks] early on. But now that everybody knows that my grades have improved, I’m trying to enjoy my recruiting process. You only get recruited one time out of your whole life.”

In recent months, Dunlap has collected offers from East Carolina, Georgia Southern, Mississippi State, Tennessee, and West Virginia.

“NC State, they’re close to coming in and offering,” Dunlap said.

Additionally, Ohio State and Oregon have recently reached out.

Dunlap had hoped to use the summer months to visit schools. However, UNC was the only one to receive a visit.

This Saturday, though, Dunlap plans to travel to Tennessee.

Having already heard plenty about the football side of UNC, Dunlap’s visit Saturday was more about academics with an emphasis on his desired major, sports management. He toured the entire campus, including visiting the dorms.

“They were just trying to show me everything and what it would be like if I became a Carolina Tar Heel,” Dunlap said.

Additionally, Dunlap’s parents were introduced to members of UNC’s coaching staff. Those introductions included meetings with Larry Fedora, defensive coordinator Gene Chizik, primary recruiter Gunter Brewer, and defensive line coach Tray Scott.

“They talked to me about Kyree Campbell,” Dunlap said. “They were saying there’s one spot left and they were basically saving it. Coach Scott and Coach Chizik told me they’re really high on me. And I think they really love me as a player and a person.”

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