02/07/13 — Maddox signs with Elon U

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Maddox signs with Elon U

By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on February 7, 2013 1:47 PM

Most football players don't smile about minoring in Spanish. Then again, Asunji Maddox isn't most football players.

Maddox, an intelligent senior safety for Goldsboro High's football team, signed a national letter-of-intent with Elon University on Wednesday afternoon.

The future Wayne School of Engineering graduate initially received interest from North Carolina State and connections between the Wolfpack's coaching staff and coaches at Elon helped Maddox find his eventual college home. Elon head coach Jason Swepson served as an assistant at N.C. State, and former Wolfpack head coach Tom O'Brien's son Dan, serves as the Phoenix's defensive backs coach.

The family atmosphere at Elon and the sense of belonging is what sold Maddox on the Phoenix.

"During the recruiting process I started going to a bunch of camps and combines trying to get as much exposure as possible," Maddox said. "The more camps and combines I went to I started to pick up things and adjust and excel.

"Sometimes you get the feeling that it is more of a business. With Elon, I really didn't get that same feeling. It felt like more of a family."

Elon went 3-8 this past season with a 1-7 record in Southern Conference play. The Southern Conference sent three teams to the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) playoffs and six of its nine members posted winning records.

Playing in a highly- competitive league against quality competition is an opportunity Maddox relishes. He plans to major in either exercise science or sporting event management with a minor in Spanish.

"Elon hasn't won a conference championship so it would be nice to make history," Maddox said. "The more you surround yourself with competition you have to elevate your game. Going into a Division I conference like the Southern Conference I feel like if I can excel there I have a chance to make it to the next level."

The 2012 News-Argus Defensive Player-of-the-Year, Maddox recorded 82 tackles, six interceptions and a blocked punt during his senior season. A four-year member of the varsity squad, Maddox finished his career with 278 tackles and 10 interceptions.

The Cougars went 39-14 and claimed three Carolina 1-A Conference championships during Maddox's four seasons.

"Asunji is so special," Goldsboro head coach Eric Reid said. "This young man has really been a focal point of our program. To see his growth over the four years and to see his hard work and positive attitude and the way it has filtered over to the other guys has been something special."