Craddock Meets With Pagano, Thigpen

North Carolina pledge Albert Craddock was disappointed with the dismissal of Marvin Sanders, his former primary recruiter at UNC, but his commitment remains as firm as ever.

"That was like my favorite coach – him and Coach ‘Thig' [Tommy Thigpen]," said Craddock. "That will be a big disappointment to some of the recruits that came, because basically the coaches is what brought the recruits there. With him being dismissed, I don't know if all the recruits will stay.

"I know that I'll stay because – like I've always said – Carolina is where my heart is at and that's where I'm going to stay."

Monday afternoon, Craddock met with Thigpen, who has taken over his recruitment for UNC, and newly hired defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano.

"It went really well," said Craddock. "Basically, [we talked] about what they expect out of me, some of the new things the coaches are bringing to the table, and how things are going to be a lot different from what it was from last year. Basically, they're just ready to get the season rolling."

Pagano left a positive first impression on Craddock, a 6-foot-2 200-pound linebacker from High Point (N.C.) Southwest Guilford.

"He's real nice," said Craddock. "As far as what I've seen from [Monday], he's good to get along with and he's just a good coach. He's straight forward and honest with me and he isn't pulling any strings with me. That's what it's all about – having a good coach."

With his recruitment all but over, Craddock has been focusing on getting ready for the next level.

"Right now I'm just lifting weights, staying in shape, and keeping my grades up," said Craddock. "I was playing basketball, but grades come first. I am going to the gym every day and lifting weights."

Craddock's academics are going "very well" as he heads into a stretch of exams at the end of this week.

"I'm going to qualify," said Craddock. "Right now they're putting me through some NovaNet classes to help with my grades. By the time the season comes back around, I should be straight."

Craddock will head to Chapel Hill on Friday for his North Carolina official visit – the lone official trip of his recruitment.

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