2008 Intro: Quinton Coples

KINSTON, N.C. --- Quinton Coples burst onto the recruiting scene last summer after impressing the previous North Carolina coaching staff during the Tar Heels' July one-day camp.

"Last year we took him to his first camp, which was North Carolina," said Tony Edwards, Kinston's head football coach. "He worked out for Carolina and had a really good experience at Carolina."

An imposing figure at 6-foot-6 and 230 pounds, Coples easily passed the coaching staff's eye test and didn't fail to impress during camp drills.

"They were just shocked," said Coples. "They were impressed by the way my body looked and how strong I was and my moves. They were highly impressed. They just told me to stay out of trouble and keep my grades up and the offer will be there."

While Coples is still awaiting his first official scholarship offer, just about every school in the south and on the east coast is recruiting him. But, he said Clemson, East Carolina, North Carolina, and N.C. State are recruiting him the hardest.

During his UNC camping experience, Coples was impressed with the facilities and coaching staff. However, he has yet to communicate with members of the new staff.

"I talked to the coach [at UNC] already and we set up a date for him to come up March 4th for the Duke [basketball] game for a visit," said Edwards. "He would have came last weekend [for the Wake Forest basketball game], but it was too short of notice."

Additionally, Coples, who has already attended a basketball game at N.C. State, will unofficially visit Auburn, Clemson, and Florida this spring.

This summer, Coples plans on returning to the Tar Heels' summer camp and will also camp at N.C. State and Florida.

With so much campus traveling on tap for the coming months, Coples will wait until later in the summer to develop a list of favorites.

"I'm thinking about narrowing it down after all these camps and visits," said Coples. "By the end of the summer I should have a [favorites] list."

Coples, who isn't sure when he'll make a verbal commitment, is most interested in schools' student athlete graduation rate and how dedicated the coaching staff is to winning.

Wherever Coples lands, he'll bring his unique breed of athleticism.

"The one thing that's impressive about Quinton is his ability to just be an athlete on the football field," said Edwards. "He's definitely tops above everybody else as far as being an athlete out there. He has that presence during the football game. You can tell that he's a step above everybody else and he's playing a speed above everybody else."

Edwards goes as far as to compare Coples to Tar Heel great Julius Peppers, who Edwards coached against during Peppers' days at Southern Nash.

During his junior season, Coples held down the defensive end position where his statistics suffered as opponents ran plays away from him. Edwards plans to respond to such antics by moving Coples to various positions on defense including defensive end, inside and outside linebacker, and even safety if needed.

"Really, he could play any position on the defensive side if he had to," said Edwards.

Also, Edwards experimented with Coples at tight end, but used him solely as an extra blocker. This season, however, Coples will see more reps on offense and will actually be part of the passing game. Coples will run track in the spring and spend a significant amount of time running routes in the summer to prepare him for his new role.

Quinton Coples Profile

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