Sage Surratt's recruitment is much more complicated than most prospects'. In addition to choosing a school, he has to decide if he wants to focus on either football or basketball -- or perhaps attempt to play both sports in college.
"I still haven't decided what I'm going to do yet," Surratt said. "I guess I'm just looking for the right school with the right fit."
Determining the right fit lacks a timetable. But, Surratt, a 6-foot-2, 185-pound wide receiver from Lincolnton (N.C.), hopes to devise a plan within the next month.
Surratt has, though, developed a list of favorite schools: Indiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Ivy Leaguers Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, and Yale. Those seven schools are among the 17 to have offered him a football scholarship.
"They're all offering something different," Surratt said. "The Ivy League, Big Ten, ACC, SEC -- they all offer me stuff that I like and I'm interested in doing. It's just a matter of what's the best school for me."
Of his favorites, UNC is the only school that has officially affixed a preferred basketball walk-on opportunity to its football scholarship offer. But, Dartmouth, Indiana, and Yale have also, to different extents, discussed playing both sports.
Appalachian State and Charlotte, who both reside outside of Surratt's favorite schools list, have offered him a scholarship in both sports.
In addition to the chance to play both football and basketball, UNC offers another unique opportunity: a chance for Surratt to reunite with his brother, Chazz, who enrolled at the school a month ago. During his first three high school seasons, Sage caught passes from Chazz. The connection has Sage 60 receptions short of the NC high school career reception record, 1,153 yards shy of the receiving yardage mark, and 23 receiving touchdowns short of that record.
"I know a lot of people don't get the opportunity to [play with their brother in college]," Surratt said. "I'm taking that into consideration. But, I'm just looking at what's best for me. But, it would be great [to play with him again]."
Chazz, who hosted his family for a visit a couple of weekends back, has shared his limited UNC experience with his younger brother.
"He just says he likes it," Surratt said. "He said it's very different. He said it's a whole lot harder than high school, in terms of school work. He said he likes the workouts, but he knows they haven't gotten into the full swing of it."
However, UNC possesses a potential obstacle: three receiver prospects have already committed to the school. Surratt says that UNC hasn't discussed the situation, but that it could potential prevent him from following his brother to Chapel Hill.
"It's just a matter of talking to them more about it," Surratt said.
Like with Chazz, Keith Heckendorf is handling Sage's recruitment for UNC. Heckendorf and the younger Surratt communicate regularly.