With nine selected, UNC-Chapel Hill has had more players chosen in the first two rounds over the last three NFL drafts than any other school in the nation except football powerhouse Alabama. The Crimson Tide have had 12 drafted.
The 2014 NFL Draft begins Thursday night at 8 p.m. in New York’s Radio City Music Hall. Rounds two and three will be conducted on Friday with the remaining rounds wrapping up on Saturday.
UNC tight end Eric Ebron is projected to be a first round pick by most draft analysts. If it comes to fruition, Ebron will become the 23rd overall first round selection in school history and the seventh since 2008.
Carolina leads the charge in the ACC with six first round picks since 2008, even topping defending national champion Florida State.
Past Tar Heel first round picks include Kentwan Balmer in 2008, Hakeem Nicks in 2009, Robert Quinn in 2011, Quinton Coples in 2012, and Jonathan Cooper and Sylvester Williams a year ago. `http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/ebron-looks-add-tar-heel-nfl-draft-success/
CHARLOTTE– Four Carolina Panthers players were named to the AP’s All-Pro team Friday.
Fullback Mike Tolbert, linebacker Luke Kuechly and center Ryan Kalil made the first team while defensive end Greg Hardy placed on the second team.
Tolbert has scored a team-high seven touchdowns this season while Kuechly has continued to spearhead one of the top defenses statistically in the NFL.
The Panthers received an opening round bye in the NFL Playoffs and will host the divisional round next weekend in Charlotte.
You can view the complete All-Pro team by clicking here.http://chapelboro.com/sports/professional/quartet-carolina-panthers-players-selected-ap-pro-team/
CHAPEL HILL– Saturday’s game against No. 24 Duke will be junior tight end Eric Ebron’s final home game as a Tar Heel.
Ebron made the announcement Monday that he will be forgoing his senior year of eligibility to enter the 2014 NFL Draft following UNC’s bowl game. He says he consulted with his family and coaches to arrive at his decision.
“Eric has decided to forgo his senior season so this will be his last home game as a Tar Heel football player. I’m proud of what Eric has accomplished and how he as represented the University of North Carolina. We are excited for him and his future. This is a good decision by him and his family and I fully support him. We are sad to see him go but are also excited for his future,” Coach Fedora says.
The Greensboro native leads Carolina with 50 receptions for 774 yards and three touchdowns this season. He holds the single-season and career records for catches and receiving yards by a tight end. So far, he has 100 career catches for 1,606 yards.
Currently, Ebron sits No. 12 on ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper’s Big Board. He is rated the nation’s top tight end.http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/tar-heel-te-eric-ebron-forgoes-final-season-declares-2014-nfl-draft/
A year ago, UNC running back Giovani Bernard delivered one of the most memorable Tar Heel football moments in recent history, maybe ever.
Yes, his electric punt return for a touchdown to push Carolina past NC State was a sight to behold. All who witnessed the events will tuck the memory away in one of their most cherished recollections, unless of course, you are a State fan.
But what is Gio authoring as an encore on this anniversary of ‘ The Return ‘ ? Well, he’s doing what Gio knows how to do best-find the end zone with cannonball-like power and athleticism.
Oh how Tar Heel nation envies the Cincinnati Bengals’ situation. Gio is now theirs. Just think if he had returned to don a Carolina blue uniform this season? Think things may have turned out a bit differently? But alas, Gio is in orange these days.
But everyone, and I mean everyone, needs to watch Gio’s magic Thursday night!
Click here and enjoy!http://chapelboro.com/columns/go-gio-go-tar-heel-star-continues-to-wow-in-nfl/
Photo courtesy of Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
CINCINNATI – Tar Heel fans already knew about the magic of running back Giovani Bernard. But now, the rest of the nation is quickly beginning to discover his talents on the football field.
Now a Cincinnati Bengals running back, Bernard is already turning heads in his rookie NFL preseason. The 5-foot, 10-inch, 205 pounder has punched in two scores for touchdowns already in the first couple games for his new team.
In his latest performance, Bernard ran for more than five yards per carry. That is quite an impressive feat for someone who is supposed to just be getting his feet wet at the next level.
But Bernard says he’s not satisfied. He told reporters that he is a perfectionist and wants to always continue to improve his play.
One thing is for sure; Bengals fans and Tar Heel fans alike will be thrilled with the initial success of the spark plug runner who currently sits behind number-one running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis.http://chapelboro.com/sports/professional/gio-shining-in-nfl-predebut/