UNC Football: Five early questions for 2018 season

CHAPEL HILL, NC - NOVEMBER 18: Chazz Surratt
CHAPEL HILL, NC - NOVEMBER 18: Chazz Surratt /
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CHAPEL HILL, NC – NOVEMBER 18: Nathan Elliott
CHAPEL HILL, NC – NOVEMBER 18: Nathan Elliott /


Who is behind center for the Tar Heels this season?

For a Larry Fedora offense, the Tar Heels were not very good last season. Their 30.3 percent conversion on third downs ranked second worse in the conference, while the 93 penalties led the league.

The Tar Heels were second to last in rushing yards per game and 10th in the conference in rushing yards per attempt.

In other words, the offense wasn’t good.

Unfortunately there are still a lot of questions on offense this season. Will Jordyn Adams ever play for the team? (I don’t know.) Should Michael Carter get most of the carries? (Yes.)

However, the biggest question is who will be under center this season for the Tar Heels. Last year Fedora played three different quarterbacks and didn’t name the opening game starter until the day before the game.

The three guys combined to complete 54.3 percent of their passes and throw 16 interceptions. They were also sacked a combined 30 times last season.

To solve this issue there are three prime candidates:

Nathan Elliot

Elliot was the backup to Mitch Trubisky back in 2016 and fared well in mop-up duty opportunities.

However, despite being in the competition early, he fell to third behind Brandon Harris and Chazz Surratt.

Elliot was eventually given the chance to start vs. Miami. Though the Tar Heels lost, Elliot kept the team in the game and gave them a chance to win. He finished the season 2-2, with nine touchdowns against five interceptions.

Chazz Surratt

Surratt was named the backup after losing the quarterback competition to Brandon Harris.

However, Surratt didn’t sit long and took over for an ineffective Harris early in the season. Despite some early razzle, Surratt’s limitations became evident and inconsistent play mixed with injury, led to Elliot’s ascension.

Surratt went 1-5 as a starter and had eight touchdowns to three interceptions. Surratt was also dangerous as a runner finishing with another five scores there.

Freshman Option

The Tar Heels brought in two freshmen this season to compete at the quarterback position in Cade Fortin and Jace Ruder. If either show they can lead the offense down the field, Fedora should not hesitate to start one of the two incumbents.

Honestly, unless one of the freshmen is a phenom, my choice would be Elliot over Surratt.

Regardless, the first thing Fedora needs to do is pick a starter and do it early. If he doesn’t the Tar Heels could be in for another long season.