Martin Down to 3, Sets UNC Visit

ROEBUCK, S.C. --- Kareem Martin expects North Carolina to field a solid defense against South Carolina in the 73rd Annual Shrine Bowl on Saturday.

"We have a real good defense on the North Carolina squad," Martin said. "Our defensive backs are real good, our D-linemen are real good, linebackers – everything."

Martin, a 6-foot-6, 229-pound jumbo athlete, will play strong-side end in the varied '50' defense the NC squad will employ. He has played both end positions in Roanoke Rapids' 4-3 defense the past three seasons.

"The only difference is I'm head up on the tight end," Martin said. "I'm usually on the outside [when my high school ran the 50 defense].

"My job is to jack the tight end up and still read inside, outside."

Although the starting lineup hasn't been officially established, Martin has been working with the "starting" unit. Regardless, he should see plenty of snaps on Saturday.

"We're not very deep on the defensive line, so there's going to be a lot of opportunities for playing time," Martin said.

To simplify the recruiting process, Martin recently narrowed his list of schools under consideration to three: Duke, North Carolina, and Virginia Tech.

Martin officially visited Duke in October and Virginia Tech in November. He also took an official visit to the now-eliminated Georgia Tech.

During the weekend of Jan. 15, Martin will officially visit UNC. He expects to be prepared to make a verbal commitment shortly after that trip.

Martin says heading into his final trip, he isn't leaning in any direction.

Ken Browning, Martin's primary recruiter, visited Roanoke Rapids High twice within the past month. John Blake, UNC's defensive line coach, joined Browning on one of his trips.

"We talk about a little bit of everything – football, how I fit into their system," Martin said. "My first year or two, [I'd be used] mostly as a rush end. Once I fill out a little more, I may move to the strong-side."

Butch Davis will have an in-home visit with Martin sometime in January.

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