It Snuck Up On Me
Posted by Austin on June 19, 2014
The first week in June, I had an exam on Monday and then I didn't have another exam until the following Friday. So that Friday was my last day of school. I also knew that the following Sunday I'd be leaving for Chapel Hill for orientation and the Tuesday after that I'd be moving in.
So the Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday between exams were pretty big days for me. During that time, I packed up my room and got all my stuff together. I kind of was just figuring out what I would do with my dorm room and what extra stuff I'd need for my room.
Friday after school it was a bittersweet moment. I knew I finished high school for the last time – I'll never walk back into that school. But I had that feeling where I was just so anxious to finally start what you've been waiting for.
During my official visit, the guys were saying that this is the worst part. You have to go back to high school and all you can think about is being up at UNC. But at the same time, you have to finish up high school strong. They were right – it's just such a hard period of time because I'm so ready to move on and start that next chapter.
It was funny, because I've been talking about it for while. I'd say to my dad, "Hey dad, I'm so ready to get up there and get out of high school." Then the other day my dad and I were talking and I said, "I'm so ready still, but it snuck up on me. It's here"
The Sunday after my final exam, I stayed with my godfather who lives on the other side of 15-501. He drove me to orientation the following Monday morning. I was there with Josh Cabrera, Freeman Jones, Corban Daly, and then some walk-ons were there. We all kind of stayed together. We went through all these academic meetings. We didn't have anything football-wise – the football staff made it clear that those days were about the school. So we went through school stuff like campus tours. The guys and I were talking about how we've already been on plenty of tours and academic meetings. So it was mostly just a rerun of most of that stuff.
That night after we got done with everything, we went over to Rams Village and hung out with some of the guys, like Bentley Spain. We actually went into my room, which will be with Brandon Fritts, M.J. Stewart, and Allen Artis. We hung out in there and played a little NBA 2k15.
The following Tuesday morning, we had our academic meeting with our football advisors. We went through a bunch of stuff with them, like how in a week we'd register for classes, but we'll already be enrolled in school. They said they'd be there helping us with it. We got our UNC identity cards.
It was just an exciting time just being up there with some of the guys – especially some of the in-state guys I played in the Shrine Bowl with. Most of those guys, I've been on visits with. I've been around them so much that I already have a good relationship with them. Josh and I talked about how much we've already been around each other and we aren't even in college yet.
That night, I went over to the football stadium and got measured for our shoe sizes, cleats, and workout gear. They put it in our locker and that was a cool moment, because I actually got to be involved. For me and for a bunch of the guys it's just living the dream. Being able to go into that locker room and see your name up on that locker, it's a really cool moment.
I graduated the following Thursday morning, so I came back to Charlotte the Wednesday before that. It was really great walking across that stage knowing all the hard work has paid off. A lot of people think that athletes don't work hard in the classroom, but I've worked hard in school, take it seriously, and take pride in my schoolwork.
A day later, I'll head to the beach for the weekend for a family vacation. My grandparents set it up about a year ago, so they're there from Saturday to Saturday. I go from about Friday morning until Tuesday morning when I report to Chapel Hill. I couldn't be more excited about it, because I'm so ready to get up there to get to work.
On Tuesday I'll report at about noon and I'll get the keys to my room. And then we'll have football meetings that day. On Wednesday, I'll actually have football orientation all day. We'll have a physical, some type of meeting with the entire team, and we'll register for classes. They said it's an all day think – I think it's from 8 in the morning to 5 at night.
Wednesday is an all football day and then Thursday we start classes. We're jumping right into it.
Before I end this, I want to say thank you to all the Carolina fans. I know that I committed pretty quickly, but throughout the process you guys always gave me love and support. After I committed, I felt like you guys were family already from how you've treated me on Twitter and when I went to games. Being around you guys made me feel like home even more than I already did. I can't thank you guys enough for that. I can' t wait to wear Carolina Blue and rep it to the best of my ability. And I can't wait to see you guys in the stands and bring home a championship.