Tar Heels Aim To Secure Jacobs

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – He can under no circumstances be labeled a "de-commit" at this point. And Vince Jacobs' verbal commitment to accept a North Carolina football scholarship for the 2006 recruiting season may barely be soft enough to sleep on. But the pledge is not firm -- yet. Though that could change after this weekend.

The 6-foot-8, 225-pound tight end/wide receiver from Providence Day takes his official visit to Chapel Hill beginning Friday.

After he attended a UNC camp this summer Vince Jacobs told his primary recruiter, assistant Dave Brock, that he had accepted Carolina's offer.

"I'm just glad this process is behind me," he said on July 19.

But as it stands right now, Jacobs has accepted invitations from Clemson and Virginia to be their honored guest in the coming weeks.

"Right now I'm verbally committed to North Carolina," Jacobs said on Thursday. "Hopefully that can be finalized this weekend if everything goes smoothly. It will just depend on the feeling I get when I'm down there. If there is any kind of doubt, I've already scheduled two other ‘officials' to Virginia and Clemson – just in case."

Jacobs said he presently holds offers from Vanderbilt (his first tendered), as well as from ACC schools N.C. State, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, to go along with UNC, Clemson and Virginia.

When Inside Carolina dropped in on Jacobs at his high school to interview him for his "Up Close" feature, Clemson assistant Marion Hobby, clad in a bright orange sweatshirt, was engaged in a closed-door meeting with Chargers' head coach Keith Flynn.

"I guess nowadays when you recruit athletes, they want to get somewhere and have a place to go," Flynn said. "I'm from the old school; if you give somebody your word, then hopefully you're going to stand by it. I know there are other schools looking and putting pressure on him. But if I had anything to do with it, it would be all said and done and he would go to Carolina."

Needless to say, the UNC coaching staff has a clear objective beginning Friday morning, when Jacobs will arrive; through Sunday, when he will depart. It's a short, but crucial window for the Tar Heels to put the finishing touches on their recruitment of the Charlotte standout.

So what do the Carolina coaches have to do in order to "finalize" Jacobs' commitment?

"I just really want to be on campus and feel like I fit in there," Jacobs said. "I want to get to know some of the players to make sure I feel comfortable with them. I just want to get on campus and see what it's like as just a regular student."

Jacobs, a three-sport athlete with an impeccable academic jacket and the son of well-educated professionals, has visited Clemson before.

"I have been there in the summer," he told CUTigers.com on Nov. 27. "I went to camp there last summer. That is when they offered me. "I have watched them on television and I like their offense. It seems very impressive. I like how they get it to the tight end so much."

"I'll be disappointed if he tells somebody he's going to do something and then he changes his mind," Flynn added. "But I do know it happens a lot. I know about ‘soft commitments.' I don't know; is that term in the dictionary?"

Still, the decision is not up to Flynn.

Stay tuned to IC for an update following Jacobs' visit on Sunday.

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