Fritts Eager To Get Back To UNC

Despite the distance, North Carolina verbal commitment Brandon Fritts figures to return to Chapel Hill for a football game this season.

"My parents and I are still planning out a date when we can go down," Fritts said. "We may drive down after one of my games on a Friday and catch an afternoon game.

"We'll definitely be down for at least one [game] for sure."

Fritts, a 6-foot-3, 220-pound tight end from Mentor (Ohio), is eyeing either the weekend UNC hosts Boston College in late October or homecoming weekend against Virginia in November.

Back in June, Fritts made his first – and only – visit to Chapel Hill as a UNC commitment. He was the only tight end to participate in Fedora's Freak Show.

"It was a little bit different knowing this is where I'm going to live for the next four years," Fritts said. "I spent a lot of time with Mitch [Trubisky] and his roommates and I got to talk to some of the other commits."

The opportunity to meet other commitments is probably more important for Fritts than any other pledge. For the most part, UNC's recruiting class is concentrated in three areas – Charlotte, northern Atlanta, and northern Virginia – while Fritts is alone in the Buckeye State. At Fedora's Freak Show, Fritts spent time with fellow commitments Cayson Collins, Robert Dinkins, and Tyler Powell, as well as Austin Proehl, who wasn't committed at the time, but eventually joined the group.

After Fedora's Freak Show, Proehl and Fritts remained in touch. Fritts also communicates regularly with Caleb Henderson, who was unable to make the camp but has taken it upon himself to reach out to most of UNC's commitments and top targets.

While most of the other commitments will head to UNC with someone from at least their same state – if not their same county – Fritts has an advantage they lack: a close friend/former teammate already on UNC's roster.

"[Trubisky] tells me what to expect when I get there," Fritts said. "He's red-shirting, so he gets to see all the things that happen in practice. Obviously when I get down there, he'll probably serve as a mentor to me."

Following the same path as Trubisky, Fritts plans to graduate from Mentor in December and then enroll at UNC in January. When he began getting recruited, Fritts put mid-year enrollment on the table, but left the decision up to the coaching staff he would commit to, which obviously ended up being UNC's.

"It just depended on the situation," Fritts said. "[UNC] wanted me to come down earlier and I was more than happy to do it. I think it's a great opportunity to get ahead and participate in spring ball."

One of the many reasons UNC wanted Fritts on campus as soon as possible is because of the possibility that Eric Ebron, a preseason All-ACC selection, could bolt early for the NFL Draft.

"Obviously if Eric goes pro, that would be a great opportunity for me to see playing time in my freshman year," Fritts said. "That's why I want to go down there early – hit the weight room, try to put on some weight, and just learn the playbook."

Although Mentor is off to a 3-1 start, Fritts's senior season has been an adjustment. For the first time since fourth grade travel basketball, he doesn't have Trubisky as a teammate. More impactful, Fritts doesn't have Trubisky as his quarterback. Thus, Mentor has relied more on the run this season and Fritts's statistics have taken a hit (10 catches and three touchdowns).

"It's a little bit different, because he's been my quarterback for the past two years," Fritts said. "But it's good for me to develop as a player, because I have to work harder. But it will be good to be back with him next year."

In addition to Trubisky, Fritts communicates regularly with Walt Bell, his future position coach.

"He'll shoot me a message on Twitter or something," Fritts said. "We just talk about how I'm doing and how they're doing and when I'm going to be coming down there."

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