National Signing Day was well over a month ago, and a handful of local athletes took part in the big day but one of the areas top players, three-star outside linebacker Matthew Flint didn't get to take part in it becasue his recruiting process was a bit of a roller coaster ride.
After originally committing to Tennessee in August with plans of enrolling in January to take part in spring practices, the Madison County product's plans were disrupted when head coach Butch Jones was fired by the Vols.
The new coaching staff no longer honored his scholarship, leaving the 6-foot-1, 213-pounder to open his recruiting process again. With Arkansas, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, Wake Forest and Western Kentucky all in the mix, North Carolina threw their name into the running after hiring former Tennessee assistant Tommy Thigpen, who had been recruiting Flint from the beginning.
Following the initial offer from North Carolina, Flint took an official visit to UNC in early January and promptly committed to the Tar Heels where he enrolled the following Monday. Not exactly the timeline the standout backer had hoped for in his recruitng process but in the end it all fell into place as he's now adjusting to life at the next level through a couple of spring practices in North Carolina.
"The school's been really hard but we just started spring the week before I left so everything wound up together you know, and I'm starting to love it," Flint said on Wenesday during his visit home for spring break. "And then they actually moved me to mike so it's a different position so I gotta be the quarterback of the defense now."
With the move to middle linebacker there will be a bit of an adjustment for Flint after mostly playing outside linebacker in his high school career but the coach that knows him best thinks he'll acclimate to that change just fine.
"I think he's going to be a great teammate and I think he'll play," said Madison County football coach Scott Sharp. "I think he'll play early because of his work ethic and he gets around those guys and I think his level of play will rise to the level of those guys."
So with the roller coaster ride of a recruiting process in the books and his focus fixed on his future at UNC, his school decided to celebrate his committment and early enrollment on Wednesday while he returned home for spring break.