Join us daily at ACC DieHards for the latest North Carolina recruiting news and notes on the next crop of Tar Heels. Don’t miss any coverage from Cody Pace and the DieHards.com team. Read his daily notebooks here at 9 a.m. ET Monday through Friday. In this edition, we take a look at the top players in the state of North Carolina in the Class of 2019.
We’re now a week removed from a very successful National Signing Day for North Carolina.
Now that enough time has passed, the bliss is subsiding and the focus has shifted to the Class of 2019. So far, the Tar Heels have three players committed and rank 25th overall.
Of those three players, just one — 3-star safety Coleman Reich — hails from the state of North Carolina. In the Class of 2018, the Tar Heels landed six in-state prospects, including four of the state’s top 16 players. That list included 4-star receivers Jordyn Adams and Dyami Brown, who could both be immediate contributors, as well as 4-star guard Avery Jones and 3-star running back Devon Lawrence.
It’s all but certain that North Carolina will pick up many more of the state’s top prospects before February 2019.
Here are some of the state’s best players that the Tar Heels will likely attempt to get for this recruiting cycle (note that the ranking in parentheses is each player’s state ranking based on his 247Sports composite ranking).
Quavaris Crouch, 5-star RB, Charlotte, N.C. (No. 1)
Quavaris Crouch isn’t just the best player in the state, he’s among the best players in the country.
The No. 2 running back and No. 17 overall player in the Class of 2019 has already racked up 19 offers, including most of the major college football recruiting blue bloods.
The Tar Heels have been interested in Crouch for a while and had him on campus for junior day at the end of January. Clemson, Alabama and Georgia are all hot on the trail for Crouch, and it’s worth noting that 5-star running back Zamir White, the top player in the state in the Class of 2018, ended up at Georgia.
Khafre Brown, 4-star RB, Charlotte, N.C. (No. 3)
Charlotte won’t be short on running back talent for next year, that’s for sure.
If Khafre Brown’s name sounds familiar, that’s because it should be. His older brother Dyami is already enrolled at North Carolina after committing to the Class of 2018.
The nation’s No. 11 running back and No. 141 overall player is already considered a lock by many in the industry to follow in his brother’s footsteps at Chapel Hill.
The Tar Heels will certainly have some competition, though. Khafre Brown has already pulled in 12 offers, including Alabama, Florida State and Michigan, as well as recruiting rivals N.C. State and Virginia Tech.
Sam Howell, 4-star QB, Monroe, N.C. (No. 4)
Ranking as the No. 4 pro-style passer in the Class of 2019, Sam Howell will have his fair share of suitors.
He’s already pulled in a whopping 29 offers and that’s before the summer arrives. With so many offers, Howell is going to take his time and check out plenty of schools. North Carolina will try to be in the mix, but with 4-star quarterback Jace Ruder and 3-star quarterback Cade Fortin coming in for 2018, this isn’t a position of huge need for the Tar Heels.
It’s unlikely that the Tar Heels beat out the number of blue bloods already in the mix for Howell, but anything is possible.
Traevon Kenion, 4-star WR, Monroe, N.C. (No. 5)
Receiver was a position of strength for the Tar Heels’ Class of 2018 and they’ll certainly try to replicate that with the junior class.
There’s not much doubt that Traevon Kenion, who ranks as the No. 35 receiver and No. 200 overall player, is the top receiver in the state for the Class of 2019.
Kenion has 11 offers, but if no other schools get seriously in the mix, it’ll come down to North Carolina, Virginia Tech and South Carolina. North Carolina will certainly hope for better head-to-head results against Virginia Tech on the recruiting trail in 2019 than it had in 2018.
C.J. Clark, 4-star DT, New London, N.C. (No. 8)
C.J. Clark could very well end up being the anchor of the defensive class for North Carolina, if it can get him on campus.
The No. 19 defensive tackle in the country has 10 offers, and Alabama is already lurking here. In October, Clark told 247Sports’ Michael Clark that the Crimson Tide and N.C. State were recruiting him the hardest. North Carolina and South Carolina are also likely going to be in the mix.
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