Devon Lawrence was one of the few uncommitted prospects to attend North Carolina's first two home games. And there's a high likelihood, the 2018 running back says, he'll return in a couple weeks for UNC's third home contest.
"I would say I have pretty strong feelings for [UNC]," Lawrence said. "But I would say that there are a couple of schools that I have pretty strong feelings for.
"[UNC] faces some strong competition, so I just wanted to see how they played that competition. I just wanted to see more of North Carolina and just talk to the coaches a little more. I just want to see more and learn more and see if I'm really comfortable there -- and that's really what I'm doing my junior year for schools. "
Clemson, Florida State, Georgia, Ohio State, and Tennessee are some of the other schools Lawrence has "strong feelings for." By the same token, the 5-foot-11, 203-pound Wake Forest (N.C.) High product denies a leader.
"I want to see what school is the place for me and if I could see myself there," Lawrence said.
This past Saturday, Lawrence learned a lot about UNC's football program through its thrilling come-from-behind victory over Pittsburgh.
"Watching the football team, they never give up," Lawrence said. "I see that.
"And just speaking to the coaches, they seem like they're really interested."
In addition to the team not giving up, Lawrence was impressed by the crowd's response.
"It was crazy," Lawrence said. "It was big, too. They had trust in their team and they supported them all the way."
During both game visits, Lawrence spoke briefly to UNC coaches on the sidelines while the team warmed up. Prior to the home-opener, though, he actually met with Larry Fedora in his office.
"[Fedora] was just telling me to keep my head on straight and keep working hard on the field," Lawrence said. "And he just said he'd like to see me at UNC."
During conversations with Larry Porter, UNC's running backs coach informed Lawrence that he planned to attend one of Wake Forest High's upcoming games specifically to check out Lawrence.
With UNC playing in Tallahassee on Saturday, returning to Chapel Hill won't be an option for Lawrence. Instead he'll catch the mega match-up between Clemson and Louisville.
Later in the season, Lawrence hopes to catch games at Florida State, Georgia, LSU, and Tennessee this season.
When Lawrence visits Tennessee, he'll likely do so with teammate Xach Gill. The two have been working on travel arrangements.
Lawrence says he compares recruiting notes with a few of his teammates. In addition to Gill, Darius Hodge and Javon Terry are a part of those conversations. Hodge, an NC State verbal commitment, understandably is very pro-Wolfpack.
"We think about what we all like at the schools and it would be pretty fun to play with each other," Lawrence said. "But, we really focus on what would be the best fit for ourselves."
Sticking together might not be a bad idea. After going 12-1 a year ago, Wake Forest High is undefeated after five games this season.
Lawrence missed two games this season while nursing bruised tissue between joints in his ankle. He returned to the lineup last Friday, a 35-0 win over Raleigh (N.C.) Broughton, and should be 100-percent healthy by this Friday's game.
Besides his teammates, Lawrence talks recruiting with his older brother, Dexter, a former five-star recruit who plays defensive tackle for Clemson.
"He really says, 'Go wherever you feel,'" Lawrence said. "Yea, he recruits for Clemson and he says good things about them. But, he doesn't really say, 'Oh you have to go to Clemson.' He just says, 'If Clemson is not the school for you, don't go there.'"