Overholt ready for challenges of new position, Division I football at UNC Charlotte

Dillon Overholt, third from left, celebrated Tuesday his preferred walk-on spot with family members, from left, Patrick Overholt, Grayson Overholt, Valerie Overholt, Olivia Overholt and Marian Overholt as well as Polk County head football coach Bruce Ollis, at rear.

Dillon Overholt made a position switch late in his senior season at Polk County, moving from quarterback to wide receiver for the team’s final four games.

Another position change will await him next season at UNC Charlotte, and Overholt couldn’t be happier about it.

“They want me to play outside linebacker. If it was up to me, I would have played outside linebacker in high school,” Overholt said. “That’s a position I always wanted to play in high school. I played it when I was younger, but I wasn’t quite big enough to play it here.

“Now I think I’ll be able to, and that’s really exciting, and I can’t wait.”

Overholt, family, classmates and teammates gathered Tuesday in Polk County’s auditorium to celebrate Overholt’s decision to accept a preferred walk-on spot at UNC Charlotte. The Wolverine senior chose the 49ers over a trio of Division II scholarship offers and a similar offer from Western Carolina.

“The school, really, and playing Division I football, because that’s what I told myself when I was younger, that I wanted to play Division I football,” Overholt said of the factors that influenced his decision. “I don’t care where, I just want to play Division I football.”

Polk County head coach Bruce Ollis thinks Overholt will get the chance to do just that sooner than some might think.

“The Charlotte program I think sees him being a guy who may even get on the field, even as a preferred walk-on, as a freshman,” Ollis said. “I told him it’s our goal for him to go down there and play. I really feel like he’s capable of playing.

“Dillon is one of the finer athletes to ever come out of this place, no doubt about that. I remember back in the summer, going to 7-on-7s, and saying you’re going to be big enough to play outside linebacker in college, and you can because you can defend like a free safety and a corner, but you can tackle like an inside linebacker. Those guys are not a dime a dozen.”

An All-Western North Carolina selection as a defensive back, Overholt recorded 88 tackles this season, intercepting two passes. He started nine games at quarterback for Polk County before shifting to wide receiver. He finished as Polk County’s second-leading rusher with 805 yards and seven touchdowns, passed for 629 yards and 11 touchdowns, caught 13 passes for 229 yards and three touchdowns and also had a punt return for a score.

All of those accomplishments helped pave a path to Charlotte.

“It means everything,” Overholt said. “It’s what I dreamed about as a little kid. You think this moment is never going to come, and it’s here and you’re like, where has the time gone? I’m happy to be moving on but sad at the same time. Polk County means so much to me and everybody here means so much to me, my friends, family, coaches.

“It’s a great day for me, and I’ve really looked forward to it.”