Fourth and Long

Published 2:53 pm Wednesday, May 4, 2011

This comment may get fellow DFFLs (Dolphin Fan For Life) like Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald Editor Cal Bryant mad at me, but I cannot find it in me to dislike New York Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan.

He is funny, charismatic and exactly the kind of coach I would love playing for. I have a long and rich tradition of hating the Jets, however I can’t help, but listen every time Rex Ryan talks. That dude cracks me up.

With nine players selected in last week’s NFL Draft, it was a big weekend for UNC football. I know one man that must have been happy was former HCHS offensive coordinator and current Tar Heel recruiting coordinator Brian Overton.

Carolina’s football program has continued to improve year after year since Butch Davis’ arrival four years ago and much of that success has been a reflection of an improved recruiting record.

While a program on the rise must be appealing to potential recruits, nothing is more appealing to the nation’s elite talent like a pipeline to the National Football League.

If you are a five-star recruit with dreams of playing on Sundays, you want to go to a school that can do a good job of preparing you for your future employment. Judging by this year’s draft, nobody has done a better job of that over the last four years than North Carolina. No other team in the country had more players selected in this year’s NFL Draft than the University of North Carolina.

I am willing to bet that when Brian and the rest of the Carolina staff are chatting it up with the countries best prep football talent, that little stat comes up.

As I continue to watch the NBA playoffs, I am amazed at how dominant the Miami Heat have been. Their first round romp over the 76ers was almost expected, however they have imposed their will over the Boston Celtics as well. That was no so expected.

Then again what do I know, I never expected the Oklahoma Thunder to struggle against the Memphis Grizzlies or Chicago to lose their first game against Atlanta.

Are any of you wondering what exactly Tom O’Brien must have been thinking when he supposedly encouraged the transfer of his starting quarterback Russell Wilson.

Wilson has been a tremendous talent and as far as I can tell he has carried the Wolfpack offense on his back since his arrival in Raleigh.

I would not be surprised to see him at Auburn next year. Russell Wilson is no Cam Newton, but NC State is also no Auburn and I am willing to bet that Wilson might get NFL looks if he was surrounded by Auburn type talent.

David Friedman is a long-time contributor to Roanoke-Chowan Publishing. A Bertie High School graduate, he and his wife currently reside in Wilmington. David can be reached via e-mail at