To proactively keep its defensive line room filled, North Carolina is bringing Allen Cater in for an official visit this coming weekend.
“They feel good about [their D-line pledges’ commitment statuses], but they have guys leaving in a few years,” Cater said. “So the depth chart is going to thin and they won’t have the numbers that they need.”
UNC actually began recruiting Cater, a 6-foot-4, 240-pound defensive end, last spring. At that time, Tray Scott, UNC’s defensive line coach, made an evaluation visit to Kennesaw (Ga.) Mt. Paran Christian School to watch Cater work out. A couple of months later, though, that communication dropped off.
“They had guys that they already offered who had took the spot,” Cater said. “[Scott] let me know that they didn’t have room for me.”
Shortly thereafter, Cater committed to Indiana.
During the latter part of the football season, Scott reconnected with Cater.
“He told me that they had more room due to injury and the depth chart is going to thin out in a few years,” Cater said. “So, they’ve got to take more guys in.”
Those conversations led to Scott offering Cater in December and inviting him for an official visit. This coming weekend – the first after the Dead Period – was the earliest that worked for both parties. It will be Cater’s first trip to Chapel Hill.
“From what I hear, it’s a beautiful campus,” Cater said. “One, a degree from there is going to set you up for a really good pathway after school. A lot of great players have played there, especially at my position (Julius Peppers played there). But really, the school itself has a great name away from its sports – it’s ‘North Carolina.’ But then you add sports to it and it makes it even better.”
This weekend Cater hopes to build on his limited UNC knowledge.
“First, I want to see what the school has to offer for a business major,” Cater said. “Then, I want to pretty much hang out with the players and see what the chemistry is like with them. And then, I want to sit down with Coach Scott and run through the different schemes and some of the basics that he’ll want me to learn.”
At least early on, Scott projects Cater to play the “speed” end within UNC’s 4-3 defensive scheme, according to Cater. But, if Cater grows into a “power” end, he’ll be switched to that position.
“I could put on weight pretty easy,” said Cater, who received all-region, all-metro, and All-Cobb County honors following his senior season.
This Thursday, Scott will visit Cater’s home after his basketball practice. The primary purpose of Scott’s stay is to go into detail about Cater’s impending official visit.
During consecutive weekends in December, Cater took official visits to Arkansas and Indiana. A week later, he de-committed from the Hoosiers. He remains in contact with Indiana’s coaches, but says they are no longer under consideration.
A week after his UNC official, Cater is scheduled to take an official trip to South Carolina, which offered over the holidays.
Cater is careful not to label Arkansas, UNC, and South Carolina as his favorite schools.
“Everything is still pretty open,” Cater said. “I’m still talking to Wake Forest [and] Illinois. Some of my coaches think that other schools are still going to come into the picture.”
Cater plans to make his collegiate decision before Signing Day. But, he won’t go public until Feb. 3.