Wilson Chooses Carolina

MCKEES ROCKS, Pa. --- Montour High School four-star athlete Christian Wilson signed a letter of intent with North Carolina Wednesday, choosing the Tar Heels over finalists Boston College and Rutgers.

"It took me awhile to think of it, but I am going to the University of North Carolina," Wilson said, before he signed his letter of intent during a news conference in Montour's athletic office.

Wilson said the coaching staff, comfort level, and most importantly, the opportunity to be utilized as a hybrid back at North Carolina separated the Tar Heels from the 50 other schools that had offered him scholarships.

"That was my biggest factor," Wilson said, of playing H-back. "(North Carolina coach Butch) Davis has done it before. They see me as a bigger, faster, (Cleveland Browns tight end) Kellen Winslow when he came into the college level, so that got me excited that my coach has known this pro tight end who is amazing and to think I am bigger and faster than he was coming into college ..."

Wilson, a 6-foot-2 ½, 222-pound four-star prospect who verbally committed to Michigan in August, had strong feelings for North Carolina throughout his recruiting process. Those feelings resurfaced when Wilson decommitted from the Wolverines two weeks ago.

"I liked Michigan a lot when Coach (Lloyd) Carr and everybody was there," Wilson said. "They wanted me for the same position that North Carolina did, but with the new coaching staff, they run the spread offense, which I didn't really see myself in."

Wilson, who rushed for 2,036 yards and 28 touchdown's and also lined up at linebacker while leading Montour to its first section title in 12 years, its first winning season in 10 years and a runner-up finish in the District 7 title game said he sees similarities between the North Carolina and Montour football programs.

"The new coaching staff was a big point of what really caught my eye," Wilson said. "They remind me a lot of my coaches here at high school. They are program building, which we did here at Montour and I want to be a part of."

Even though North Carolina is seven hours from Wilson's hometown of McKees Rocks, he said he will feel at home once he arrives on campus, thanks to a few Pittsburgh ties within the program.

"(Offensive coordinator John Shoop) and both the head strength coach and assistant strength coach are from Pittsburgh," Wilson said. "And two players: center Cameron Holland and Mike Dykes are there and they are from here, too."

Wilson called Shoop and Davis Tuesday night to tell them he would be headed to North Carolina, but first he played a little joke on them.

"I called Coach Shoop then coach Davis last night and I played a joke on them and acted like I wasn't going there," Wilson said. "I said, 'Thank you for recruiting me and coming to my house, but I'm coming to you guys,' like that. Six or seven coaches called me and all the players called me. I feel more wanted at UNC did I did at Michigan. I felt happy that they wanted me to come there."

Wilson said he will head to campus in June, a few days after he plays in the Big 33 Classic, an all-star game which showcases Pennsylvania and Ohio's best players.

Montour coach Lou Cerro said he will be sad to see Wilson leave, but is confident he will succeed at North Carolina.

"He's come a long way since I've been here," said Cerro, who took over the Spartans during Wilson's sophomore season. "He basically put a whole community and team on his back. It turned into a great senior year for him. It's a shame what happened to him in the recruiting process with Michigan, but I know he's comfortable with his decision with North Carolina."

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