The Wolfpacker

March 2018

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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44 ■ THE WOLFPACKER BY MATT CARTER N C State has 16 scholarship seniors on its 2018 roster, which means that the Pack should be able to take close to a full class of 25 in 2019 once typical offseason attrition factors into the numbers. Here is a breakdown of some of the early targets. Quarterback Early target to watch: Four-star signal- caller Sam Howell posted huge numbers as a junior for Sun Valley High in Monroe, N.C, completing 225 of 382 passes for 3,372 yards with 36 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He also rushed 230 times for 1,594 yards and 24 scores, while leading Sun Valley to the semifinals of the 3-AA state playoffs. rates Howell as the No. 3 recruit in the state, and the No. 5 pro-style quarterback and No. 134 overall pros- pect nationally. NC State had the 6-1, 205-pound Howell on campus for its Alpha Wolf Showcase last July and for the head- line home contest against Clemson. He is expected to return for a spring practice. Howell has added offers from the who's who of college football, including Ala- bama, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Michigan and Ohio State. Other notable targets: Four-star Paul Tyson from Trussville (Ala.) Hewitt-Truss- ville High and three-star K.J. Jefferson from Sardis (Miss.) North Panola High. Running Back Early target to watch: Most atten- tion will be focused on five-star Quavaris Crouch from Charlotte Harding, who is rated as the No. 1 prospect in the country in the 2019 class by Crouch is not the only top-rated in-state running back. Four-star Zonovan Knight from Southern Nash High in Bailey is ranked No. 181 nationally among juniors, and is listed No. 9 among running backs in the country and No. 8 among recruits in the state. The 6-0, 185-pounder rushed 142 times for 1,877 yards and 27 touchdowns as a junior, helping Southern Nash go 12-2. The Wolfpack offered Knight in late January and has some built-in connections. His father, Carl Taybron, was a high school lineman that signed with NC State in 1998, and Knight's cousin Dwayne Herndon was a starter on NCSU's 2005 offensive line. Boston College, Illinois, Louisville, Maryland and Wake Forest have also of- fered Knight. Other notable targets: Crouch and three-star Jamious Griffin from Rome (Ga.) High. Wide Receiver Early target to watch: As a junior at Mt. Airy (N.C.) High, three-star wideout Donavon Greene caught 46 passes for 1,138 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also returned two interceptions for scores, and ran back a kickoff for a touchdown during the state playoffs. At 6-3, 185 pounds, Greene has speed to match his size. Last year at the 1-A state track and field meet, he was fourth in the high jump (6 feet, 4 inches), sixth in the 200-meter dash (22.8 seconds) and eighth in the long jump (20 feet, 7.5 inches), and helped his team win the 800 relay. Greene visited NC State for its home win over UNC last November and returned for a junior day Feb. 24. He also has been offered by Duke, North Carolina, Notre Dame and Wake Forest, among others. lists Greene as the No. 17 recruit in the state and the No. 54 wide receiver in the 2019 class. Other notable targets: Four-star Ramel Keyton from Marietta (Ga.) High, three- star Keyon Lesane from Matthews (N.C.) Butler High and three-star Jacoby Pinckney from Roebuck (S.C.) Dorman High. Tight End Early target to watch: NC State was the first school to offer Greenwood (S.C.) Em- erald High three-star Luke Deal. The offer came while Deal was visiting for a game last fall and could prove very important. The 6-5, 230-pound Deal has picked up additional offers from Auburn, Flor- ida, Georgia, Michigan and Notre Dame, among others. "NC State is always going to be in my top schools partly because of that reason," Deal explained. "I think a lot of that kind of stuff. "It means a lot for me because … there was no reason prior for them to jump on me, and they jumped on me with no hesitation." rates Deal as the No. 6 pros- pect in South Carolina and the No. 24 tight end in the country. Other notable target: Three-star Kyle Bilodeau from Woodberry Forest (Va.) School. Zonovan Knight from Southern Nash High in Bailey ran for 1,877 yards and 27 touchdowns as a junior and is ranked as the No. 9 running back nationally in the rising senior class by PHOTO BY KEN MARTIN Luke Deal, a 6-5, 240-pound tight end from Greenwood, S.C., received his first scholarship offer from NC State. ranks Deal as the No. 6 prospect in South Carolina and the No. 24 player at his position in the country. PHOTO COURTESY LUKE DEAL ■ FOOTBALL RECRUITING Looking Ahead To The Class Of 2019

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