Elite Miami LB to Visit UNC

In a continued attempt to research the numerous schools that have extended a scholarship offer, Etienne Sabino will tour the three Triangle universities of North Carolina.

"On the weekend of April 14th, I'm going up to visit N.C. State, Duke, and the University of North Carolina," said Sabino.

"Duke was my first offer, so initially I just wanted to check out their campus. But then about two weeks after that UNC and N.C. State also offered me. I was going up there for the weekend anyway, so I might as well see all three."

With the recent addition of Ohio State, Sabino, a 6-foot-3 230-pound linebacker from Miami (Fla.) Krop, is up to 16 scholarship offers. In addition to the three schools from the Tar Heel State, he holds offers from Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Louisville, Miami, Notre Dame, USC, and Tennessee.

Sabino began his tour of college campuses with Florida's Junior Day a few weekends back.

"Basically, I just met with all the coaches," said Sabino. "I met with Urban Meyer and Charlie Strong. ‘Doc' Holiday is my recruiter. I met with [Holiday], sat down with him for a little while. I just got a feel for what they do and how they run things.

"I was very impressed with their practice. I thought it was very intense – I liked it."

His travels then brought Sabino to the campus of Miami for one of the Hurricanes' spring practices.

"Actually I like Coach [Michael] Barrow a lot, the linebacker coach over there," said Sabino. "He took me down to his office [and] we spoke."

Sabino is in the process of assembling a tour that will include Georgia, Georgia Tech, and Tennessee, which would take place after his trip to NC. He's also trying to get up to Notre Dame for an unofficial visit.

Amid his campus tour, Sabino isn't claiming any favorites.

"I have no favorites, at all," said Sabino. "Everybody, right now, is equal. I'm trying to weigh all my options out [and] take all my visits first."

Sabino, who is looking to graduate early and enroll in college in January, will establish a list of favorites in the next couple of months.

"[I'm looking for] academics and I've got to feel comfortable with where I'm at," said Sabino. "Basically, academics are big, because it's very important to my family."

Heading into his trip to the Tar Heel State, Sabino is well aware of – and quite interested in – the legacy that one UNC coach possesses.

"First of all, I'm very interested because of Butch Davis," said Sabino. "I know he's a great recruiter and he's going to turn that program around. I want to be on a team that's going to play for a national championship one day."

John Blake is recruiting Sabino for North Carolina as an outside linebacker. Sabino and Blake keep in regular contact both through text messages and over the phone.

"He's real cool and down to earth," said Sabino. "He said that they're trying to start something new over there. And I'm very interested in seeing what they have over there."

Sabino finished the 2006 season with 131 tackles, eight sacks, and returned a fumble for a touchdown. His performance earned him All-Dade County honorable mention.

Etienne Sabino Profile

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