After finalizing what he described as “the most difficult decision of my life,” North Carolina quarterback Mitch Trubisky announced on Monday that he is eligible for the 2017 NFL draft.
Since UNC ended the season with an 25-23 loss against Stanford in the Sun Bowl, Trubisky had been trying to decide whether to return to UNC for his senior season or enter the draft. He spent more than a week evaluating his options before making his decision official on Monday.
“After much research, reflection and prayer, I have officially decided to declare for the 2017 NFL Draft,” Trubisky said in a statement that UNC released. “This has been the most difficult decision of my life because of the unbelievable people and experiences I’ve had at the University of North Carolina.
“It's hard to leave a special place like UNC, which has had such a huge impact on my life and helped make me into the man I am today.”
Though he only started for one season, Trubisky is likely to be remembered among UNC's best quarterbacks. During his lone season as the starter, he set single-season school records for passing yards (3,748) and touchdown passes (30).
He helped lead the Tar Heels to dramatic comeback victories against Pittsburgh and Florida State during the first month of the season. In what turned out to be his last college game, he led 97-yard drive against Stanford that allowed UNC to have a chance to tie the game in the final minute.
UNC’s two-point conversion attempt failed, though, after Trubisky's 2-yard touchdown pass to Bug Howard with 25 seconds remaining. That touchdown pass proved to be Trubisky's final college pass.
Trubisky has been projected as a first-round pick in the NFL draft, which is April 27-29. Some NFL draft analysts have speculated whether Trubisky could be the No. 1 overall selection. He recently appeared on the back cover of the New York Daily News, which reported that the New York Jets might be interested in drafting Trubisky.