UNC’s Mitch Trubisky has a life-changing decision to make. Does he leave North Carolina following the Sun Bowl on Dec. 30? Or does he return to Chapel Hill for his senior season?
Trubisky has 28 touchdowns and four interceptions this fall. He’s demonstrated the pinpoint accuracy and field maturity that has some NFL scouts drooling. For several franchises throughout the league, Trubisky is being hailed as a potential savior.
The biggest pro for declaring would be that numerous analysts, including ESPN’s Mel Kiper, consider Trubisky the best quarterback available for the 2017 draft.
One pro for returning to UNC for Trubisky would be additional game experience. Others include the chance to raise his pro stock even higher, living the college lifestyle one more year and a chance to challenge for the Heisman Trophy.
But are those pros worth the cons?
Trubisky could return to UNC and not play as well in 2017, lowering his stock.
He could suffer major injury.
Other prospects could emerge as more highly touted quarterbacks, moving over Trubisky heading into the 2018 draft.
Kiper admits that Trubisky could be the top pick if he waits another year, even though he’s good enough to go in the early-to-mid first round now.
“I think he’s a first round talent, but I’d love to see him go back to North Carolina for another year,” Kiper said on a teleconference with sportswriters across the country in early December. “If he does, he could be the first overall pick in the 2018 draft. For a top ten pick and maybe the first pick overall, 13 (career) starts (at UNC) has to be a little bothersome.”
Trubisky doesn’t have to worry about position competition at UNC should he return. The Tar Heels redshirted Chazz Surratt and Logan Byrd this fall, while redshirt freshman Nathan Elliott played sparingly.
Notre Dame transfer Malik Zaire is waiting partially on Trubisky’s decision before making his own.
With UNC on his short list, Zaire won’t be coming to Chapel Hill if Trubisky returns. But the possibility of Zaire landing at UNC increases should Trubisky declare for the draft.