East Carolina’s football recruiting Class of 2003 grew
smaller by one earlier this week.
Offensive lineman Matthew Brim from Winston-Salem’s Carver High School has
withdrawn his verbal commitment from the Pirates and cast his lot with the
hometown Wake Forest Deacons.
Brim, a 6-foot-6, 305-pounder, had committed to ECU in August.
The Pirates had shown confidence in Brim with the offer
while other schools like Wake, North Carolina and N.C. State held off to
evaluate him further during the football season. But Brim, who was rated the
state’s No. 25 prospect in The Fayetteville Observer’s preseason list, had a
change of heart.
“Wake Forest didn’t offer until they saw some senior tape,’’ Carver coach
Keith Wilkes said. “East Carolina had offered him early in the summer and I
had tried to talk him into waiting on his decision because anything can
happen. But he liked East Carolina and was worried about what would happen
if he got injured.
“Then Wake offered him right after the first game of the season. He went
back and forth on it. I think that Wake Forest just grew on him more and
more as the season went on, and he finally felt like he wanted to go
Wilkes said the fact that East Carolina doesn’t have a winning record this
season was not a factor for Brim.
“I don’t think so,’’ Wilkes said. “There were outstanding coaches at both
schools and he liked them all. He just felt more comfortable at Wake Forest
in the end.’’
The defection by Brim trims the list of known ECU commitments to seven.
The Pirates, as usual, are working the Chesapeake area of Virginia very hard
this season. Two players from that area who have ECU high on their on the
list of schools are safety Ray Norfleet from Western Branch High in
Chesapeake and lineman Noah Sutherland of Floyd Kellum High in Virginia
Norfleet, a 6-foot, 205-pounder with 4.4-second speed in the 40-yard dash,
is part of the one of the state’s best linebacking corps at Western Branch.
He made 11 tackles for loss, seven sacks and returned a fumble 60 yards for
a touchdown as a junior.
ECU was the first to offer Norfleet after he attended summer camp in
Greenville. Syracuse, Viginia, Virginia Tech and West Virginia are the other
schools courting Norfleet.
The 6-5, 250-pound Sutherland racked up 69 tackles and five sacks as a
junior on defense. ECU and Kent State have offered, and he favors the
Pirates over Indiana, Maryland, Penn State and Stanford.
Another offensive lineman from Virginia, this one from the Lynchburg area,
is Lewis Watson. Watson, from Heritage High, is a 6-5, 295-pounder with 5.0
speed. He received his first offer from ECU in August after attending the
Pirates’ summer camp. He also likes Maryland, South Carolina and Virginia
The Pirates have lined up one of New Jersey’s top prospects to make an
official visit to Greenville on Dec. 6. Wide receiver-defensive back Greg
Hill from Long Branch, N.J., is a dynamic athlete with 4.5 40 speed. Hill
made 32 catches for 688 yard and 12 touchdowns as a junior on offense. He
added 62 tackles and eight interceptions on defense, while also returning
three punts for touchdowns and blocking four kicks on special teams.
East Carolina, Grambling, Morgan State and South Florida are Hill’s
scholarship offers at this point, but North Carolina, Ohio State, Virginia
Tech and West Virginia are also recruiting him.
Cody Scoggins, a 6-2, 190-pounder quarterback from Rome, Ga., is also
scheduled to make an official visit to ECU on Dec. 6 or Dec. 12. A high
school option quarterback, Scoggins has great speed (4.4) and could switch
to wide receiver at the college level.
The U.S. Naval Academy was the first school to invite Scoggins to join its
program. He’s also being looked at by Georgia Tech, Kentucky, UAB,
Mississippi State, Troy State and Marshall.