Sports

UNC tight end Brandon Fritts, who missed the 2018 season, announces he will transfer

North Carolina tight end Brandon Fritts has decided to transfer.

Fritts, who has one year of eligibility remaining, announced the news Friday on Twitter.

“I will be transferring for my final year of eligibility and as thankful as I am for my unbelievable time here at chapel hill (sic), I am just as excited and hungry for my next journey,” he wrote.

It is unclear where he will go next.

The 6-4, 240-pound tight end was expected to be a big contributor for the Tar Heels in 2018, but he suffered a knee injury in the spring. He later had surgery and missed the entire season.

Junior tight end Carl Tucker started and had 16 catches for 265 yards and two touchdowns.

During Fritts’ junior season in 2017, Fritts finished with 25 catches for 177 yards and four touchdowns. His four touchdowns were second on the team.

Fritts could have been an asset in a passing game that struggled throughout the 2018 season. While the Tar Heels averaged 248.8 passing yards per game, ranked 48th in the country, they struggled to score touchdowns in the redzone. UNC’s redzone touchdown percentage was 53.3 percent, which was ranked 117th out of 130 FBS teams.

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UNC’s Brandon Fritts (82) leaps over N.C. State’s Mike Stevens (2) during the first quarter. Chris Seward cseward@newsobserver.com

Fritts went to Mentor High in Ohio, where he was teammates with former UNC quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. During his junior year of high school, he caught 59 passes from Trubisky for 1,189 yards and 17 touchdowns. Trubisky is the starting quarterback for the Chicago Bears.

Fritts, who was recruited by former UNC coach Larry Fedora, enrolled at UNC in January 2014 and was redshirted during his freshman season. Two weeks ago, Fedora was fired after seven seasons as the head coach. Mack Brown, who coached at UNC from 1988 to 1997, was hired to replace him.

In the three years Fritts saw the field, he had 47 catches for 441 yards and nine touchdowns.

Jonathan M. Alexander has been covering the North Carolina Tar Heels since May 2018. He previously covered Duke basketball and recruiting in the ACC. He is an alumnus of N.C. Central University.


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