Elijah Hood scores 3 touchdowns in Shrine Bowl lossTwo Observer-area players made huge plays in the final minutes of the 77th annual Shrine Bowl on Saturday afternoon. First, Charlotte Catholic’s Elijah Hood scored his third touchdown of the game to give North Carolina a two-point lead with 1 minute, 54 seconds left. But Rock Hill Northwestern QB Mason Rudolph drove his South Carolina team down the field before throwing the game-winning pass with 16 seconds left to Gaffney’s Shaq Davidson. South Carolina won 28-23. (Charlotte Observer)
UNC football commits to play Saturday in Shrine BowlThe 77th North Carolina-South Carolina Shrine Bowl kicks off 1 p.m. Saturday at Gibbs Stadium in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The game matches the top senior high school football players in North Carolina against their S.C. counterparts. The game can be heard live on these radio affiliates. ESPNU will televise the game via tape-delay Dec. 29 at noon.
UNC WR commit Josh Cabrera to miss Shrine BowlNorthside High standout football player Josh Cabrera will miss Saturday’s Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas with a fractured left hand. Cabrera, who has committed to play for the University of North Carolina, made the Shrine Bowl roster earlier this year while helping Northside to a 10-4 overall record, an East Central 2-A Conference title and a trip to the third round of the NCHSAA 2-AA playoffs. (Jacksonville Daily News)
Brandon Fritts finishes high school, to head to North CarolinaBrandon Fritts took his last final exams at Mentor on Thursday. When he walked out of the school midday, he did so for the final time as a student at Mentor. So ended a decorated high school career that included benchmarks seasons for the Cardinals’ boys basketball and football programs. The two-time first-team All-Ohioan receiver/tight end is graduating early to enroll at North Carolina in early January on a full football scholarship. (News-Herald)
Yorktown DB M.J. Stewart to enroll early at North CarolinaBefore Yorktown All-Met RB/DB M.J. Stewart committed to the University of North Carolina in July, his mind was set on graduating early. But he needed a full year of English and a semester of U.S. Government to earn his diploma. Stewart took it upon himself to knock out his English requirement over the summer, and Friday will mark the end of a highly successful three-year football career at Yorktown. (Washington Post)
Elijah Hood set to land another honor: Eagle ScoutElijah Hood has accomplished a lot on the football field at Charlotte Catholic. The High School All-American running back has rushed for a Mecklenburg County record 8,981 yards (fourth-best in state history) and 147 touchdowns (third best in state history). He tallied 3,690 yards (second-best in state history) and 53 touchdowns this year. But the University of North Carolina signee says he’s just as proud of what he has done off the field – especially his work with Boy Scout Troop 172 at his church. (Charlotte Observer)
Charlotte Catholic’s Elijah Hood among pantheon of Mecklenburg County football greatsAt 6-foot, 215 pounds, Hood is blessed with a blend of speed and power that I’ve seen only one time before from a Mecklenburg County running back, and Hood had a way of always playing his best in the biggest games, like in his final home game two weeks ago in the state quarterfinals. Hood ran for a 372 yards and six touchdowns, both career highs. (Charlotte Observer)
Video: QB Caleb Henderson Senior Season HighlightsSenior season highlights from 2014 4-star North Carolina quarterback commit Caleb Henderson. Henderson's team runs an offense almost identical to the Tar Heels', so it's easy to see how well he'll fit in with UNC's scheme:
5-star cornerback Minkah Fitzpatrick has UNC on his listMinkah Fitzpatrick, a 6-1, 185-pound consensus five-star cornerback, has adjusted his focus back to his recruitment and is in the process of gaining a better idea of which schools to take most seriously. The Rutgers program is one of them. Fitzpatrick highlighted the additional institutions he is strongly considering. “South Carolina, Ohio State, Miami (Fla.), UNC, Penn State, I don’t know,” he said. “I like a lot of schools for different reasons. Hopefully, it will get clearer soon.” (NJ.com)
UNC an early favorite for 2015 RB Nyheim HinesThe early favorite for Nyheim Hines' commitment is probably in-state North Carolina. He has built a very good relationship with second year head coach Larry Fedora. "I talked to coach Fedora every Tuesday, though I missed this past Tuesday. I've seen his offense in action a lot and I know it will work really well," he continued. "They played tough this year." It's still relatively early in the recruiting process for Hines, but he has had the chance to make visits to most of the schools that are close to home. (Land-Grant Holy Land)
2015 linebacker/safety Tanner Muse commits to ClemsonClemson landed a commitment Sunday night from one of the top junior prospects in North Carolina in DB Tanner Muse (6-3 200) of Belmont. Muse is a safety and had 87 tackles and four interceptions this season. He also returned a pair of punts for touchdowns. (Palmetto Sports)
Video: Elijah Hood post-season highlights2014 North Carolina running back signee Elijah Hood's high school career ended this weekend when his Charlotte Catholic team lost in the playoffs. Here's a look back at his post-season highlights...and there are plenty of them. (Hudl.com)
Video: Avery Edwards senior season football highlightsSenior season football highlights of 2014 UNC tight end commit Avery Edwards from Ravenscroft School in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Weekend Football Recruit ScoreboardAlthough many of UNC's football recruits have completed their high school seasons, several future Tar Heels are still in the hunt for state championships. Among those is running back Elijah Hood, who led his Charlotte Catholic team to victory with 372 rushing yards and six touchdowns. Tight end/wide receiver commit Brandon Fritts also helped advance his team to the next round with 178 receiving yards and a touchdown. Find out how other UNC commits fared in this edition of Inside Carolina's Weekend Recruit Scoreboard. (Inside Carolina)
Brandon Fritts comes up big againWhen Mentor faces St. Edward, the man to watch is Brandon Fritts. On Saturday, Fritts hauled in nine catches for 178 yards and a touchdown in Mentor's 41-38 regional final/state semifinal victory. Fritts was at his best a year ago when these two teams met in the regional semifinal. He accounted for 243 yards and four touchdowns in a 63-56 win for Mentor. A senior, Fritts will graduate Mentor early to start class next semester at North Carolina, where he will play football. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)