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Heel Tough Blog: Weekly Storylines- June 13th

This week was one of the busiest weeks of the offseason for the Tar Heels with two commitments in the 2023 class and more official visits taking place late in the week. With this being the focus, there are some other storylines that may have flown under the radar around the program from the past week. Here is a look at what you may have missed.

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Julius Peppers Back on the NFF College Football Hall of Fame Ballot

On Monday, the National Football Foundation released their Hall of Fame ballot for the 2023 class and it once again featured Peppers, the fourth straight season that he has been on it. Peppers is one of the most decorated players in Tar Heel football history, winning the Chuck Bednarik, Lombardi and Bill Willis trophies and taking home first-team unanimous All-American honors following the 2001 season. He also earned All-American (second team) and first-team All-ACC honors in 2000, a season where he finished as the nation’s leader in sacks with 15.0. He finished his college career with 167 total tackles, 53.0 tackles for loss, 30.5 sacks (2nd in Carolina history), 42 quarterback pressures, five interceptions and 13 pass deflections, five forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. It feels like it is only a matter of time but the wait for someone as talented as Peppers is definitely frustrating.

@whynot.bron- Instagram

2023 4In-State EDGE Jaybron Harvey Places Tar Heels in Top Five

On Monday, one of the Tar Heels most important targets from the state of North Carolina narrowed down his list to five schools. The Tar Heels, as expected, were one of the five following his official visit to Chapel Hill back on June 3rd. Louisville, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Wake Forest are the others that remain in the running for him, with Oklahoma and South Carolina already having received official visits this month and Louisville still set to host him this coming weekend. The Tar Heels appear to be the leader for him right now and it feels like a decision may be coming down sooner rather than later.

@paul_mubenga458- Twitter

Tar Heels Make Top Five for 3IOL

At one time in his recruitment, it appeared that the Tar Heels were out of the race for 2023 3✮ IOL Paul Mubenga, but following an official visit to campus, it’s safe to say that they are in fact squarely in the pursuit for his commitment. That was proven further on Wednesday when he named the Tar Heels as one of his final five along with LSU, Michigan, South Carolina and Texas A&M. The Tar Heels got the first crack at him last weekend when they hosted him for an official visit before Michigan did the same this weekend. Texas A&M and LSU will get the final two cracks at him before the end of the month and will likely set the table for a decision shortly after that.


3OT Koby Keenum Sets Official Visit to Campus

As we told you last week, Keenum placed the Tar Heels in his top five late last week and on Monday he announced that he would be taking an official visit to Chapel Hill after an unofficial visit last weekend. The Tar Heels will get the final crack of the month following a visit to Kentucky this weekend and Louisville next weekend, the two teams that are currently seen as the leaders for him. Earning this official visit is meaningful for the Tar Heels, though, and shows they at least have a fighting chance here.

@amareGcampbell- Twitter

Virginia LB Amare Campbell Announces His Official Visit

Keenum isn’t the only target that announced that he will be taking his official visit to campus on the weekend of June 24th this week. 2023 3✮ LB Amare Campbell confirmed via social media on Monday that he will be on campus for his official visit that final weekend of the month, as well. This is one that the Tar Heels should go into pretty confident about their chances with only Maryland appearing to be a threat.

@laythghannam56- Instagram

Tar Heels’ 4IOL Layth Ghannam Chooses Virginia Tech

While Tar Heels did land Kaleb Cost’s commitment on Saturday, they did miss on another one of their 2023 targets earlier in the day. Ghannam announced his commitment to Virginia Tech on Saturday morning shortly after 10 AM via social media following official visits to Carolina and West Virginia in the weeks prior. This didn’t come as much of a shock considering the projections heading into the decision, but it does allow the team to turn its focus toward other targets at this position of need.


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