Even though his season isn't over yet, recruiting is picking up for Wilmington (N.C.) Hoggard offensive guard Jonathan Cooper. The 6-foot-3, 287-pounder is starting to consider potential visits.
"It's been busy recently," he said. "North Carolina's recruiter came by, their offensive line coach. He talked to my parents. Coach Petercuskie from North Carolina State came by too. I'm expecting to see Steve Spurrier on Wednesday. I'm pretty excited about that."
With all these coaches coming in, is the three-star prospect making plans for visits?
"I know my first visit will be to North Carolina in January," he said. "I don't have a date on that yet. I do want to take a number of officials during that month and enjoy the process."
North Carolina, South Carolina and Wake Forest appear to still have an advantage in regards to Cooper.
"They still kind of lead," he said. "It's the education at those schools. They are good football programs. Steve Spurrier is a top coach, Wake Forest won the ACC last year and has a great education, and then Butch Davis is at North Carolina. I've also heard they have the fifth youngest team in the country, so they are only going to improve."
Cooper confirmed that along with North Carolina, he plans to take officials to South Carolina and Wake Forest in January too.
The No. 47 offensive guard in the country has helped Hoggard to a 13-0 record and a shot at the regional championship this weekend.
"We're still playing football," he said. "We play Southern Durham this week and if we win we'll go to state next Friday.
"This year has been different. At the beginning of the season it looked like there was no way we'd go undefeated like last year. We've come together and we're doing well. We've stepped up and I'm helping my team playing both ways.
"This was my first year playing defense and it went pretty well. I'm a decent run stopper and solid on pass rush. I've brought up the chance of playing that in college to a few schools. I'd be interested, but most want me on offense. As for the offensive line, it seems like my pass blocking is much, much better. It helped a lot with the campus over the summer. I learned the right technique."