"The next day, I called Ken Browning and I told him I wanted to commit to North Carolina. He congratulated me and he was awfully excited about the news. He told me that when Butch Davis gets back from vacation that he'll give me a call."
Harrelson, a 6-foot 180-pound wide receiver from Chesapeake (Va.) Smith, selected UNC over scholarship offers from Clemson, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Maryland, NC State, Virginia, and Virginia Tech.
"North Carolina is an overall good school – good football program and academics," said Harrelson. "Also, it's not that far and has a good atmosphere. I have a lot of family that lives in North Carolina and in Virginia so it would be easy for them to come watch me play."
The character of Browning, Harrelson's primary recruiter at UNC, also played a major role in his decision.
"He was very real with me," said Harrelson. "He told me they were very interested in me. He did a good job informing me about how the team is doing and how they've been progressing since Butch Davis got there."
In early June, Harrelson attended the Tar Heels' one-day camp and left claiming UNC as his leader.
"That was my first visit there and I felt really good with the coaches and the whole atmosphere with the school," said Harrelson. "I can see myself being a part of that."
The decision to make a commitment so soon was actually planned.
"I wanted to get it over with and get focused for the season [and] have no pressure about what school I'm going to be going to," said Harrelson.
Harrelson's teammate, wide receiver Kerry Boykins, is also being heavily recruited by UNC and is looking to make a verbal commitment within the next couple of weeks.
"North Carolina is definitely one of his favorites right now," said Harrelson. "He has a three-way tie between North Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland. [I think] his top school is Maryland right now, but he still doesn't know yet [who he'll commit to]."
While Harrelson excels as a defensive back, UNC is recruiting him as a wide receiver – more specifically the split end.
"Mainly, they're just recruiting me as receiver," said Harrelson. "They said they want to use me as the ‘X receiver.' That's what I play now. So I have a good understanding of the offense a little, because we run basically the same kind of formations."
As a junior, Harrelson caught 72 passes for 710 yards and seven touchdowns earning him Second Team All-State, First Team All-Tide Water, and First Team All-District honors. He also recorded 30 tackles, 44 pass breakups and seven interceptions.