A decade long sore spot with UNC fans, of which Coach Bunting has made no secret of his desire to upgrade. Thus, look for UNC to go for around four more OLs this year (after grabbing 6, 3, and 6 over the past three).
2002 Projected Depth Chart
1. Issac Morford (6-3, 285, Sr-5)
2. Marcus Wilson (6-3, 285, Jr-4)
1. Jason Brown (6-3, 330, So-2)
1. Jupiter Wilson (6-4, 295, Jr-4)
2. Chase Page (6-5, 270, So-2)
1. Jeb Terry (6-6, 305, Jr-4)
2. Willie McNeill (6-4, 295, So-3)
1. Greg Woofter (6-5, 285, Jr-4)
2. Skip Seagraves (6-5, 285, So-3)
Commitment: Whit Efrid (6-4, 310, 5.1, NC) - Whit comes to UNC out of West Stanly High School in Oakboro, North Carolina. Whit is extremely strong, as evidenced by his 410 bench press and 525 squat. He averaged five pancake blocks as an offensive lineman last year and also performed the kicking duties for West Stanly. Whit is considered a consensus top 25 player in NC and is ranked as a top 60 national OLman.
1. Marcus McNeil (6-7, 310, GA) - Among the nation's top 5 OL prospects. Marcus currently lists UNC, MIA and GAT as his three favorites, and he grew up a Carolina fan when he lived in Fayetteville, NC. He has since moved to Georgia, but still has some family in the area. Visited NCSU for UNC-NCSU game and reportedly made his way to the UNC locker room after the game. Also saw UNC at the GAT-UNC game. Official visit to UNC on 11/30. 46 tackles and 13 sacks at DL as a senior, 76 pancake blocks on offense.
2. Brandon Jefferies (6-5, 270, NC) - Brandon is ranked by alliancesports.com as the #2 G in the nation. He hails from Shelby, NC (Crest High School, same school as Chesley Borders). Brandon is quick for a young man his size (4.8 40) and strong (400 lb. Bench press). He will probably wait until late January or early February before deciding - says he is open among TN, SC, UNC, NCST and VAT. Visited unofficially for the WF game.
Projection: UNC, TN or NCSU (too close to call)
3. Kyle Ralph (6-5, 280, OH) - Top 10 national offensive G prospect who committed to Vanderbilt earlier this spring, but has now opened up the process following Woody W's resignation. Now lists OSU (12/14), FL, ILL (12/7) and UNC (1/11) among his favorites, along with BC, MISS, SC, TN, ND, PITT and VANDY. All have offered.
4. Brian Johnson (6-5, 290, FL) - Top national OL prospect who currently states that UNC leads, followed closely by LSU.
Official Visits: LSU 11/30, UNC 12/7, CLEM 1/11, ARK 1/18, FSU/NCSU/SC 1/25.
5. Jimmy Martin (6-5, 300, VA/FUMA) - Originally from Chantilly, VA, is spending a year at Fork Union to shore up academics. UNC official visit on 11/30.
Projection: Virginia Tech
6. Dustin Fry (6-3, 300, SC) - State wrestling champion and former HS teammate of current Tar Heel Chase Page. Dustin bench presses 400 lbs. and squats over 600 lbs. Currently favors Clemson slightly over South Carolina, Carolina and Maryland. Visited UNC unofficially for the ECU game.
Official visits: UNC (11/30), SC (12/7), MD (1/4) and CLEM (1/11).
7. Jonathan Palmer (6-6, 310, 4.8, GA) - Teammate of UNC lean Marcus McNeill. Plays DT and OT in HS. Visiting UNC officially on 12/7.
8. Jabari Levy (6-8, 300, SC) - CLEM and SC lead TN and UNC for this mammouth OL prospect out of Berekely, SC.
Official Visits: TN 1/11, SC 1/18, UNC 1/25, FSU 2/1
Projection: South Carolina
9. Patrick Faulk (6-3, 260, NJ) - OT/DT prospect. His cousin Kurt Faulk played football for UNC in the 80s. Teammate of current UNC commitment Melik Brown. 90 tackles and 8 sacks from his DT spot as a senior. UNC currently has a huge lead over MD, MINN, SYR and WISC. All five have offered and SYR and WISC like him at DT.
10. Randy Hand (6-6, 300, FL) - National top 100 player. Has set visits with UNC 11/30, UVA 12/7 and SC 12/14. Also going to trip to two from FL, MICH and MIA.
11. Jeff Edwards (6-5, 285, GA) - Former teammate of current Tar Heel Brandon Russell. Set to visit Ohio State 11/30, Maryland 12/7 and Stanford 1/11. Also considering DUKE, NW, and NC. 3.5 GPA and 1250 SAT and says academics are extremely key to his recruitment.
12. Frank Straub (6-6, 305, KY) - UNC currently leads BC, Cincy, KY and Louisville for his huge OL prospect out of KY. UNC is the only school among his top 5 that has not offered at this stage.
13. Jonathan Benson (6-5, 280, NC) - West Montgomery student who was awarded the prestigious UNC Morehead Scholar with a 4.4 GPA and a 1570 SAT. It is my belief that UNC would likely be recruiting him but for his Morehead candidacy - i.e., if he comes to UNC as a Morehead Scholar, could "walk on" the football team because UNC isn't recruiting him. UNC's main competition for Jonathan is coming from Harvard, Yale and Princeton, with schools like Stanford, Virginia and Wake Forest actively recruiting him for football and academically.
Projection: Morehead walk-on
14. Joseph Stutts (6-0, 260, NC) - Center prospect from Wilson-Fike in the mold of current UNC starting C Adam Metts (6-0, 260). East Carolina and Marshall have offered Joseph a scholarship, but Joseph has said that he is UNC bound when and if they offer. Even if UNC decides not to offer, the UNC coaching staff would like to see Joseph come aboard as a "recruited walk-on" with the potential to earn a scholarship down the road like Will Chapman, David Thornton, Robert Harris, David Bomar, Ross McAllister, Jeff Reed, etc. in recent memory.
Projection: UNC walk-on
15. Leroy Harris (6-5, 285, 5.0, NC) - This Southeast Raleigh OL/DT prospect is currently committed to NCSU but says he may visit UNC and/or ECU officially this December. 50 tackles and 8 sacks as a junior.
Projection: North Carolina State
With Sims leaving and the injury to Chapman, Heels could use a couple more here
2002 Projected Depth Chart
1. Donti Coates (6-3, 290, Jr-4)
2. Jonas Seawright (6-6, 310, So-3)
1. Will Chapman (6-4, 275, Jr-4)
2T. Eric Davis (6-3, 275, Sr-5)
2T. Carl Smalls (6-2, 275, So-3)
Transfer Commitment: Carl Smalls (6-2, 275, 4.9, SC) - Committed to SC out of HS after considering UNC, decided to transfer to UNC this past summer and will be eligible in 2002-2004. NC-SC Shrine Bowl MVP coming out of HS. Top 40 nationally ranked DT coming out of HS. Chiseled frame, strong and fast for his size.
Antavius Barrino (6-5, 260, 5.0, NC) - Signed with UNC out of Forest Hills in 2001, but a bout with mono in August put him out of action and he decided to wait till January 2002 to enroll thus giving him 5 years of eligibility beginning in 2002. 95 tackles, 22 tackles for loss and 5 sacks as a senior. Top 40 nationally ranked DT.
Kendall High (6-6, 260, 4.9, West Rowan HS, NC) - Nicknamed "man-chil