Breaking: UNC lands four-star WR
It happened a lot earlier than Joshua Downs thought it would.
The four-star wide receiver out of Suwanee (Ga.) North Gwinnett was planning to take numerous visits in the coming months and maybe commit late in the summer, but over the weekend, after his second visit to Chapel Hill in a week, it hit him that he wanted to be a Tar Heel.
North Carolina beat out Georgia Tech, Michigan and NC State for Downs, a very elusive wideout who has an impressive offer list. He gave the news to Mack Brown and his staff Sunday, then announced it publicly Thursday.
IN HIS OWN WORDS
"I went up there the Saturday before last and they won my mom over. Then, I went back this past Saturday with my dad and they won him over. It was on that visit that I felt it. There was no reason for me not to commit to North Carolina, so I did," said Downs.
"I went in the office with coach Longo, we talked about two and a half hours and I knew it then. Coach Longo talked to me, my dad, my uncle and the receivers coach about how they would use me and it was just the right fit. He talked about their plan, how they are going to change things around and how they are not going to try to run the spread, but how they are going to run the spread.
"North Carolina is the place to be for me. I like the coaches and it is a perfect fit. It is a great place, a great school, a great offense and it just feels like the right place for me.
"I am a little surprised I have committed this early, but I know it is the right time for me. It is earlier than I thought. After the coaches won both of my parents over though with the way I feel about it, it is the place for me.
"I am a big believer in coach Brown. He won a National Championship at Texas, he took UNC to numerous nine-plus win seasons and I believe he can do it all again. He is a going to turn it around at UNC again.
"All the players have bought it, all of them are saying it is the place to be and now I am going to be part of it. The energy is changing and it is not just everyone talking, but it is really different already.
"I am locked in on UNC now. I feel very good about my decision."
Downs is dangerous with the ball in his hands. He is so quick, so shifty and so elusive, so he was looking for the right offense that he felt he could thrive in. North Carolina showed him their plan and he fell in love. He has over 20 offers, he has been on numerous visits and he felt at home in Chapel Hill. His father, Gary Downs, played at NC State, so many felt the Wolfpack had the edge entering this calendar year, but instead, he goes to North Carolina, where his uncle, Dre Bly coaches.