With the year not going as most thought it would, with six games left on the schedule some of the fan base might be thinking why should they travel to Chapel Hill to see the UNC Football team play out the remainder of the season? Well, if for nothing else, to see who is probably going to be the first tight end taken in next year’s NFL Draft, if he chooses to go early to the pro’s… Eric Ebron.
If you had not noticed yet, last night’s game against #10 Miami should have given you all you needed to see on how good the Carolina tight end is at the collegiate level, and how good he might just be when he goes to the National Football League, be it this season or next, as he is a junior.
I am sure the close to forty NFL scouts and five General Managers that were in attendance last night at Kenan Stadium had plenty to write/talk about when it comes to number 85, as he dashed and slashed the Miami defense for 199 yards, 71 of those coming on a touchdown catch and run that showed Ebron’s strength and speed on the gridiron. And another chunk coming on this incredible one handed catch, that if it had been, no pun intended towards his NFL career, “on the money” might have been the second score for the tight end.
This year the Carolina tight end has 532 receiving yards, which is just 93 less than all of 2012, which ranks him 31st overall in Division IA, and only second behind Jace Amaro (Texas Tech), who has 606 yards, as far as his position is concerned.
On the other hand Ebron has compiled those yards on 31 catches, just nine less than the prior season, giving him a 17.1 per, compared to Amaro’s 12.9 with 47 catches. The UNC tight end also has three touchdowns, which is two more than his counterpart at Texas Tech.
Ebron leads the Heels in yards, be it on the ground or through the air, having close to 29% of the aerial yards (1859) for the squad, has the most catches, is second in average per catch to anyone that has over 1 catch, is only behind Quinshad Davis in finding the end zone, with the wide out having five altogether to his three.
The 532 yards that the tight end has accumulated is just 73 less than the whole team has gained on the ground this season. Each and every game this year he had had multiple catches and averaged double digits for the catches. He has caught touchdowns in three of the last four games. Much better than a season ago when he managed four scores the whole year.
With still plenty of football left to be played in the 2013 campaign, four of the last six games for the UNC Football team being in the friendly confine of Kenan Stadium, if you want something, or better said someone, to go see… Erik Ebron is the name I would give you.
Starting with Virginia in 10 days, who right now has only two wins, then Tobacco Road rival N.C. State (3-3) two weeks later, onto a non conference game with Old Dominion (4-2) in the second to last game of the season and ending with Duke (4-2) on the last weekend of November, there is plenty of opportunities to see #85 in action all over the field. Since not only can Ebron catch the ball, he can also block just as well when asked to.
With the way that things are shaping up for both the Wolfpack and the Blue Devils, they might both need the win on the road against the Heels to be bowl eligible, and that in itself is another reason to be at the games.
I would be surprised if Ebron does not shatter the 1,000 yard mark this season, as well as getting eight or more touchdowns. Which means, in a season that hasn’t been what neither the so called experts or the fans thought it would be there is still a silver lining. But one, that unfortunately, might just be here for only a half season more before he deservingly leaves for the National Football League.