The Tar Heels signed 27 new members to their program on Wednesday morning on 2024 Early Signing Day. While this may not be the most talented class that Mack Brown and his staff have signed since returning to Chapel Hill, this group should still have fans excited. Let’s hand out some superlatives for the Tar Heels 2024 class.
Most Excited About: Jordan Shipp
There are a lot of players from this class that I am looking forward to seeing at some point in Carolina Blue, but none more than Shipp. Watching him in Bank of America Stadium to start this season showed me he has the chance to be the next special receiver to don a Tar Heel uniform. He thrives in all three levels of the passing, doing his most damage at that intermediate level on and inside the numbers. He has the route-running ability to create separation and the height and explosiveness to win the 50/50 balls. He has some of the most reliable hands in this class and makes the difficult catches look easy. After he catches the ball, he can be a bit of a menace in the open field with his ability to stop and start and the straight-line speed that he possesses. With all of the talent that is in front of him on the depth chart, he may not have a major impact this season, but once he gets on the field, I find it hard to believe that he will not be a fan favorite.
Most Likely to Make an Early Impact: Jaiden Patterson
There are a lot of really good options to pick from in this class, but Patterson might be the most talented and versatile player that the team signed on Wednesday and will make him the easiest member of the class for the staff to play early. He played all over the defensive backfield in his final two seasons and thrived anywhere the team used him. He has outstanding speed and acceleration that allows him to cover a lot of space quickly and make plays both in coverage and the run game out of the safety spot. He also has the coverage and ball skills to thrive on the outside or in the slot as a corner, which gives the Tar Heels the option to play just about anywhere in the secondary. I think Patterson has the chance to be the best player in this class and could be a factor in immediately when he arrives to campus.
Most Underrated: Timothy Lawson
This might be the toughest one to pick because there are a lot of players in this class that I think are better than their ratings tell you. Lawson is the one that stands out the most to me, though. At 6’5, 220 lbs, he has a really solid frame already and he pairs that with some promising athleticism. He does an outstanding job of stretching the field, thriving in the intermediate and deep passing games, something the Tar Heels could use once Bryson Nesbit departs. He does a good job of finding open grass and separation and always seems to find space after the catch. Blocking, as with many high school tight ends, isn’t his biggest strength but from the reps he has on his tape, there is a lot of promise there which is all you can ask for. The room in front of him is packed right now but with his potential as a blocker he could have a chance to be a major contributor at the position starting in 2025.
Best Position Group: Wide Receivers
A lot of the talk on signing day was centered around the team losing Keenan Jackson to NC State, but this is still the best room that the team brought in this cycle. Jordan Shipp and Alex Taylor have the skillset to be game-changers on the outside immediately and Javarius Green is an underrated receiver that should have been a composite 4✮. The talent already in front of these guys may prevent them from making an immediate impact, but this is the most purely talented room that the Tar Heels signed on Wednesday.