Jim Hawkins, Inside Carolina

UNC A 'Top School' for Xach Gill

The in-state D-lineman returned to UNC for Fedora's Freak Show.

GREENSBORO, N.C. --- Xach Gill's most recent visit to North Carolina, last month's Fedora's Freak Show, only strengthened the Tar Heels' position with the in-state D-lineman.

"North Carolina was one of the first schools to offer me and they've been at the top of my list," Gill said. "So, they're sitting good right now."

However, Gill, a 6-foot-5, 270-pounder from Wake Forest (N.C.) High, doesn't have a formal favorite schools list. Each of the 21 schools that have offered remain in play.

"Right now, I'm just trying to get a feel for everyone before I narrow my list down," Gill said. "I want to narrow it down to, I'd say, five before the season starts."

Gill, though, admitted that UNC would make the cut.

After naming a final five, Gill will schedule official visits with those schools. He plans to take all of his official visits during the season so that he has the option to graduate early.

Besides UNC, nearby NC State is the only school that Gill has visited this summer. He hopes to travel to Virginia, Virginia Tech, and UCLA before the fall.

This year's Fedora's Freak Show was Gill's fourth or fifth trip to the school. One of those visits was for last summer's Freak Show. But, unlikely last year where he was simply a spectator, Gill was a full participant on June 18.

"I feel as if it was better, because I could get a feel for Coach [Tray] Scott and his coaching," Gill said. "It was a hands on, learning experience.

"He's a good coach. He coaches you up. He's energetic. He's going to show you what you need to do and I liked being able to follow by his example."

For Wake Forest High, Gill plays defensive end in a three-man front, which is basically a hybrid tackle/end. He ended his junior season with 51 tackles, including 6.0 for a loss and 4.0 sacks, as the Cougars went 12-1 in the highest classification in NC.

"Coach Scott told me with my athleticism and everything, they see me going in at D-tackle and end," Gill said. "Whichever they need me. Definitely, [they see me] rotating around."

Before the Freak Show actually began, Gill and his family met with Larry Fedora in his office.

"He just talked to me about my upcoming season and basically how I'd fit in at UNC," Gill said. "He sees me fitting in as the last defensive lineman that's coming into UNC. And he says I could make an impact on the field."

UNC has two D-line prospects commitment -- Jake Lawler, an end, and Jordon Riley, a tackle. Gill was told by Fedora that UNC has room for him in this class.

Gill also spoke to Gene Chizik, UNC's defensive coordinator, before the camp. But, the two had a more lengthy conversation afterwards.

"He was telling me that he likes what he has seen, how I've grown over the past year, [and] he could tell I've been working," Gill said. "I was glad to hear that."


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