The college application process is pretty standard for college bound high school students. Apply and select from the schools that accept you.
For New Hanover’s Garrett Walston, who is one of the best tight ends in the country, more than 20 schools took a run at signing him.
“I was talking to people form Georgia, Carolina, Penn State, Ohio, Northwestern, Boston College, Wake Forest, throughout the whole United States pretty much,” Walston said.
Throughout the entire process Walston has tried to stay humble, he doesn’t even have a twitter account. He has made an impression with New Hanover first-year head coach Earl Smith.
“He’s a gentleman, he’s kind of quiet around me anyway," Smith explained. "He is focused and one of the toughest competitors I have ever been around.”
At first, Walston selected Georgia, but after a change of heart he is staying close to home and signed with North Carolina.
“My parents have always been to my games, my dad works two hours away from here, three times a week and he has never missed any of my games - even when he was sick. So, I want he and my mom to continue to come to my games,” Walston added.
Walston isn’t just a one sport athlete, he also excels at baseball. But he won’t play baseball his senior season. Instead, while his friends are running around the bases, he will be taking college classes. He is on track to graduate early, and enroll at North Carolina in January.
“I can stay and play baseball, but would that help me in following my dream of getting on the field as a freshman? We both said no, so graduating early was the best option,” said Walston about his decision.
At 6'4" and 225 lbs., Walston is a rare talent, and models his game after New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski.
“He reminds me of Jimmy Graham, Ben Watson, and the guys that can spread out and go get it. I think it’s as high as he wants it to be,” said New Hanover offensive coordinator Darryl Raynor.
Before he leaves for North Carolina, he still has some work to be done on the football field. Friday night the Wildcats will host E.E. Smith in the first-round of the NCHSAA 4A playoffs.
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