Nicks in the Mix

While he's been given no assurances from the North Carolina coaching staff, 2006 signee Hakeem Nicks believes there's a good chance he could see action as a true freshman this fall with the Tar Heels.

"Everybody is expecting me to come in and play right away," said Nicks, a 6-foot-1, 210-pound wide receiver from Charlotte (N.C.) Independence. "That makes me feel good – to have pressure on me. I've always like to carry the team on my back.

"I think I'll be able to handle it. I know college is a whole different level from high school, and that some people are thinking that I should redshirt. But I feel like I'm used to having pressure on me and I can take it."

And fans can't wait to see him on the field either, especially after Nicks wrapped up his high school career by being named MVP of the state 4-AA championship and leading Independence to a 15-0 season.

With a flare for big game heroics, Nicks caught eight passes for 205 yards and two touchdowns in the title game; and later hauled in a touchdown pass in N.C.'s Shrine Bowl win last December.

As a senior, he ranked first in the state with 93 receptions for 1,819 yards and 20 touchdowns, including 10 in the playoffs.

"I'm really excited; I can't wait (to go to UNC)," Nicks said. "I stay after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays and run, and I work hard in the weight room. I also play basketball to stay in shape."

Nicks said he hasn't had a chance yet to workout with any of the UNC quarterbacks yet, but he has seen Joe Dailey and Cam Sexton play in the spring game.

"I think they're both pretty good," Nicks said.

Hakeem Nicks profile

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