Tarik Cohen had one scholarship offer coming out of Bunn High, a school of about 900 students located just northeast of the Wake County line.
It was the last time his talent will fly under the radar.
The Chicago Bears took the N.C. A&T star with the 119th pick in the NFL draft, (13th in the fourth round).
In college, Cohen rewarded the Aggies’ faith they put into a 5-6, 179-pound running back by turning in one of the best careers in school history.
He burst onto the scene as one of the best Football Championship Series players in the nation. He was a three-time MEAC Player of the Year, four-time first-team all-conference pick, two-time All-American and MVP of the 2015 Celebration Bowl.
The Celebration Bowl put Cohen into the national spotlight. He ran for 295 yards and three touchdowns in a 41-34 win over Alcorn State live on ABC.
He ran for 5,619 career yards and 58 touchdowns in his four seasons at N.C. A&T.
Cohen added to his draft value by turning in a 4.42 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, which was third-fastest among all running backs.
He is the first player from N.C. A&T taken since Broughton grad Junius Coston was selected by the Green Bay Packers in the fifth round of the 2005 draft. Only two Aggies have been picked in an earlier round.
In high school, Cohen ran for 252 yards in a playoff win against North Brunswick. He returned three kicks for touchdowns and was part of a 4-by-100 state championship relay team in track and field.