- Dave Hooker, Reporter, RecruitingNation
The latest commitment was more confirmation
North Carolina fans know all too well that the Tar Heels have long struggled to keep the state's top prospects. Four-star defensive end Jonathan Bullard from Shelby (N.C.) Crest reminded them of that when he committed to Florida on Saturday.
Credit the Gators with a strong presence in North Carolina, while the Tar Heels face cloudy NCAA issues and manage a coaching change. In addition to Bullard, Florida has landed five-star offensive lineman D.J. Humphries and four-star safety Rhaheim Ledbetter, who is also from Crest.
Schools outside North Carolina have landed eight of the state's top 10 prospects. Four-star defensive end Jamal Marcus from Durham (N.C.) Hillside and four-star athlete Todd Gurley from Tarboro (N.C.) High are still undecided.
North Carolina's highest rated in-state commitment is Jay Jay Patterson from Roanoke Rapids (N.C.) High. The four-star offensive guard committed to North Carolina in April and is the No. 11 prospect in the state.
Clemson and South Carolina have also done well recruiting the state to the north. The Tigers secured commitments from four-star receiver Germone Hopper from Charlotte (N.C.) Phillip O. Berry and four-star defensive tackle Carlos Watkins from Forest City (N.C.) Chase. South Carolina has commitments from four-star offensive tackle Brock Stadnik from Greensboro (N.C.) Western Guilford and four-star receiver Jody Fuller from Monroe (N.C.) Sun Valley. Georgia nabbed the state's top five-star tailback: Keith Marshall from Raleigh (N.C.) Millbrook.
The competition in the state will only grow since North Carolina State has prioritized the region.
It might be too late for newly hired head coach Larry Fedora to secure the state for the 2012 class, but clearly it's a top priority if the staff is to be successful.
The latest commitment was more confirmationNorth Carolina fans know all too well that the Tar Heels have long struggled to keep the state's top prospects.