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And with the home opener only nine days away, a starter has yet to be named by head coach Larry Fedora. From the outside, it appears both quarterbacks are right for the system and are likely set to see game action, at least for the first couple weeks inside the cozy confines of Kenan Stadium.
But despite the intense competition for the leading role behind center, Trubisky says Williams has helped him grow in his self-belief.
“I’ve learned to be confident in yourself and your abilities. He’s told me that no matter the competition, you got to believe you can do the job. That’s what I’ve learned from Marquise. He’s got a lot of confidence in himself and the guys on the offense. I think that’s something I can definitely take away from him,” Trubisky says.
Trubisky says the coaching staff is pleased with the progress of both of the quarterback competitors fighting for supremacy of the Tar Heel offense.
“Coaches are telling us to do our best every day. They aren’t really worried about the competition. They know it’s a great thing for our offense. We push each other every day and make our team better,” Trubisky says.
Junior receiver Kendrick Singleton is yet another weapon in the arsenal for the Trubisky-Williams duo. Nicknamed “Bull”, Singleton says the pieces of the puzzle are coming together in his third go-around in Chapel Hill.
“I can see the whole picture. I know the whole offense now. I know what he does, he does and he does. If you don’t know, ask me. I see the whole picture,” Singleton says.
A season ago, Singleton recorded six receptions for 66 yards and a touchdown. But he’s looking to make a bigger splash in 2014 thanks in large part to the influence of senior tight end Jack Tabb.
“He’s helped me with a whole bunch of things. He’s been a great leader and brings energy every day. He always pushes me to be the best I can be daily,” Singleton says.
Singleton will provide another target for UNC to go along with reliable receivers like Quinshad Davis and Bug Howard.
Singleton has put on some extra weight in the offseason, but says he’s still able to run with the best of them.
“I’ve gained 15-20 pounds. For two and a half weeks it went down during training camp running every day, but I’m going to be back soon. I maintained my speed. I can still run and make cuts. It’s been pretty nice,” Singleton says.
An under-the-radar battle raging on the practice fields comes at the place-kicker position. Senior East Chapel Hill High School product Thomas Moore is being challenged by promising freshman upstart Freeman Jones.
Coach Fedora says the position remains up for grabs, although the inexperience of Jones shows.
“I wouldn’t say anybody has really separated himself. But the freshman is having the toughest transition between the two, because he’s learning the timing that you have to have at the college level. You don’t just get to sit back there as long as you want and kick the ball,” Coach Fedora says.
With only six seniors dotting the Carolina roster this fall, the youth movement remains alive and well for the Tar Heels. There will be plenty of room for underclassmen to assume starring roles this fall.