- Tom Luginbill, ESPN Staff Writer
When most people think about North Carolina athletics, they think of its long-standing and prominent basketball tradition. However, North Carolina has proven over the years to produce some of the finest football recruits in the South.
Charlotte boasts one of the country's most prolific football programs in Independence High School. Coach Tommy Knotts has built a national powerhouse, and the Patriots are two-time defending state champions and currently hold an 85-game win streak heading into this year's playoffs. Florida QB Chris Leak and Georgia freshman WR Mohamed Massaquoi are proud alums.