Heels Among Charles' Pursuers

North Carolina is among the schools that have been recruiting Orson Charles the hardest.

"Since they offered me, they've sent me a lot of emails and when the coaches are allowed to call, they call," Charles said. "It's been pretty steady throughout."

Charles, a 6-foot-3, 216-pound tight end from Tampa (Fla.) Plant, says he and UNC tight ends coach Steve Hagen speak roughly once a month.

"[He talks about] basically how they need me, how much they throw to the tight ends, and mismatch problems their offense creates," Charles said. "He said I could come in and play right away."

Hagen informed Charles that he sees Charles as a hybrid back in UNC's offense, which utilizes two different types of tight ends.

"I liked being able to do a lot of different things like being spread out wide to catch a pass," Charles said.

Charles has, however, placed recruiting on hold for the time being as he focuses on school and his senior football season.

"I'm telling all the college coaches that I'm waiting to make my decision and waiting to do all my research," Charles said. "At this point right now, I'm just still praying and talking to my mom, my pastor, and my mentor. I'm still taking my time with it."

Following his senior season, though, Charles will begin to attack his recruitment.

"That's when I'll really just sit down and really talk to the coaches every day and see what they have to say," Charles said. "[I will talk about] me getting a great education – I want to major in construction engineering and I want a school that has a good program in that. Football-wise, I want to play early and be able to make a difference in the offense."

Charles says he doesn't have any favorites and that UNC is "still in the mix."

"Really, I don't know too much about [UNC]," Charles said. "That's one of the reasons why I'm going to have to really sit down and talk with the coaches, and go up there. I really know nothing about them."

Charles, who has never been to Chapel Hill, isn't sure if he'll visit UNC. But he says if he does make a trip, it will have to be of the official variety.

After dropping the season opener to nationally ranked Seffner (Fla.) Armwood, Plant bounced back to win five straight games. Last Friday's victory over Tampa (Fla.) Hillsborough, however, was very costly.

"Now we have to bounce back from losing our quarterback, Aaron Murray," Charles said. "It looks like he'll be out for the season. But if we make it deep into the playoffs, he could be back. Regardless, we really have to step it up."

Charles transferred to Plant prior to his senior year after starting three seasons at tight end in a wing-t offense at Riverview (Fla.). Thus far this season, Charles has caught 27 passes for 653 yards and nine touchdowns.

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