The Tar Heels are still buzzing from their wild come-from-behind win over Duke last night in Durham. On Sunday afternoon, they received more good news in the form of a flip of one of their remaining targets in the 2023 class.
Shortly after 1:00 PM on Sunday, 2023 3✮ S Ayden Duncanson announced via social media that he was flipping his commitment from East Carolina to the Tar Heels. Duncanson’s flip comes after he took an unofficial visit to Chapel Hill earlier in the week to show his mother the campus. She was unable to attend his initial trip to campus for the season opener back on August 27th and it’s clear that she saw what was needed for him to officially flip.
Duncanson, the No. 80 safety in the 2023 class, is currently in the midst of his senior season at Whitefield Academy in Mableton, GA, the same high school as fellow 2023 Tar Heel commit Caleb LaVallee. So far this season, through his first six games, he has piled up 17 total tackles, two interceptions and four pass deflections on defense. He has also been a huge part of the team’s offense this season as the quarterback, throwing for 782 yards and 12 touchdowns while also leading in rushing and rushing touchdowns. Last year, as a junior, he earned both All-Region and All-County honors as he finished with 23 total tackles, four interceptions and five pass deflections on defense and 37 receptions for 725 yards and five touchdowns while splitting his time at defensive back and wide receiver. As a sophomore, Duncanson burst onto the scene as racked up 13 total tackles, five interceptions and four pass deflections while also playing quarterbacks in five games for the varsity team.
Duncanson’s film shows a player with plenty of potential, but is a guy who has some developing to do. He has some outstanding speed that allows him to cover a lot of space and a nose for the football, things that this secondary desperately needs. He has been a much better tackler this season than in previous years, showing much more willingness to be involved in the run game. Just like with his fellow classmate who recently flipped from East Carolina, Ty Adams, the fact that he has been playing so much on offense means there hasn’t really been chances for him to grow as a safety in practice. Because of that, there is a lot of development that is needed for him, meaning it will almost certainly take him some time before he can become an impact player on defense.
With the commitment, the Tar Heels now have 20 commits in the class, including four in the defensive backfield. The class jumps up two spots to 20th overall according to the 247Sports Composite team rankings and they remain fifth in the ACC rankings, but close back in on Louisville, who has recently jumped ahead of them. The team has passed out three offers to athletes in the class in the past two weeks, giving us a couple of new names to watch as we head towards the early signing window.