Carolina Baseball Signs 16 For 2011 Season

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. –-- The University of North Carolina baseball program continued its strong showing on the recruiting trail by signing 16 of the nation's top prep baseball student-athletes to National Letters of Intent during the early signing period, head coach Mike Fox announced Wednesday.

Included in this class are five of the nation's top 50 prospects and seven of the top 20 players in the state of North Carolina, according to various rankings.

The 16 student-athletes will enroll at UNC in August 2010 and will take the field for the Tar Heels in the 2011 season.

"We are very excited about this recruiting class. Coach Forbes, Coach Jackson and Coach McCay did a wonderful job putting this group together," said Fox. "Chad Flack, our undergraduate assistant coach last season, also deserves credit as he spoke to many of these young men on their visits and gave them great perspective on being a student-athlete at the University of North Carolina.

"My assistants work very, very hard at recruiting, and this class is evidence of their continued efforts to keep our program at the highest level. We believe we have met many of our needs for the future with this group."

On the national level, Carolina has signed five of the nation's top 50 players according to Perfect Game USA: No. 8 Stetson Allie (Infielder/Right-hander, Olmstead Falls, Ohio), No. 37 Andrew Smith (Right-hander, Roswell, Ga.) No. 39 Connor Narron (Infielder, Goldsboro, N.C.), No. 47 Sean Coyle (Infielder, Chalfont, Pa.) and No. 49 Jake Cole (Right-hander, Tuscon, Ariz.).

UNC also landed five of Baseball America's top 100 high school prospects – Allie, Coyle, Narron, Smith and Matt Roberts (catcher, Graham, N.C.). Carolina is one of only five programs to sign at least five of the top 100 with Florida, LSU, Miami and San Diego joining the Tar Heels in this exclusive group.

The Tar Heels also continued their success in the Old North State by inking five of the state's top 12 players and seven of the top 20 in the early period, according to various rankings. In addition to Narron, who is rated No. 1 in North Carolina by Perfect Game, Roberts is ranked as the state's No. 1 prospect by Impact Baseball.

According to Perfect Game, other top-20 North Carolina prospects signing with the Tar Heels include: No. 6 Parks Jordan (Infielder, Winston-Salem, N.C.), No. 11 Hobbs Johnson (Left-hander, Rocky Mount, N.C.), No. 17 Tate Parrish (Left-hander/Utility, Smithfield, N.C.), No. 19 Jeff Bouton (Outfielder, Wilmington, N.C.) and No. 20 Brian Holberton (Catcher, Charlotte, N.C.).

Outside North Carolina, the Tar Heels signed nine players from five different states, including the top player in Ohio (Allie) and Arizona (Cole).

In Coyle, the brother of UNC freshman Tommy Coyle, UNC landed the No. 2 player in Pennsylvania. Rye, N.Y., infielder Colin Moran, the brother of former Carolina All-America Brian Moran, also signed with UNC and is ranked as the No. 10 player in New York.

The Tar Heels continued their success in the Northeast, signing three of New Jersey's top seven players: No. 3 Jordan Tabkaman (Right-hander, Pompton Plains, N.J.), No. 4 Thomas Zengel (First Baseman/Outfielder, High Bridge, N.J.) and No. 7 Shane Taylor (Right-hander, Mullica Hill, N.J.).

Carolina also added two of the top players in Georgia: Smith, who is ranked No. 6 in the state, and No. 39 Kent Emmanuel, a left-hander out of Woodstock, Ga.

For all the latest UNC baseball recruiting info, including full recruiting boards for the signing classes of 2009, 2010 and 2011, head to ...

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