Don Callahan/Inside Carolina

UNC DE Commit Chris Collins is 'A Kid Who Loves Football'

Inside Carolina went on location with Richmond (Va.) Benedictine High head coach Greg Lilly to learn more about UNC's newest verbal commitment, Chris Collins ...

What type of player is UNC gaining in Chris Collins?

"A kid who loves football -- from a preparation standpoint, offseason conditioning, watching film, knowing your position, trying to get better at your position, learning techniques, wanting to be coached hard -- that's the first thing that I think of when I think of Chris."

Where you surprised by his selection of UNC?

"No. I think he's been leaning towards North Carolina for several weeks. Coach JP [John Papuchis] and Coach [Deke] Adams have done a great job recruiting him. And I think the three visits he took down there, I think he felt very comfortable on campus. I think he liked his future teammates that he ran into.

"I will say the two qualifiers for him -- and obviously academics and all those things were paramount -- he wanted to go to a place where he thought they could win and he wanted to go to a place where he thought he'd be challenged and get better. I think being down there he believed that Coach [Larry] Fedora, Coach Adams, Coach JP were going to win and make him a better football player."

Can you elaborate more on the recruiting job that Papuchis and Adams did?

"Those guys are true professionals and are very, very good recruiters. I know they've gotten some accolades in the past about it. But, I've known these guys on a personal level for five, six years when they were recruiting Raymon Minor; Coach JP was at Nebraska at the time and Coach Adams was at South Carolina. So, I've known these guys on a personal level for a long time and they are genuinely good guys, who care about young men [and] understand how football can make you a better person. And I think that's a big thing with our guys here. Our guys understand how important academics are [and] how important good character is, and how football can develop those things."

What has Papuchis and Adams said about how Collins projects into their defense?

"I think they think he could be a dynamic pass rusher. Obviously, a weak-side defensive end. I think he has some physical developing to do, so I don't know if he's a 'ready made' guy right now. 

"But, he has a great frame, he's athletic, [and] he has a good work ethic. So, he'll be a guy who they are confident will help them, particularly from a pass rushing standpoint maybe soon rather than later. And then as a complete defensive end once they get him in the weight room a little bit and he has a few more birthdays."

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