Gray Cleared to Return

North Carolina verbal commit Chris Gray returned to the doctor Wednesday afternoon and was given clearance to begin practicing with his team.

Gray, a 6-foot-4 offensive lineman from Landrum (S.C.), discovered he had a hernia just before the start of his senior season and has missed every game of his senior season thus far. However, he will play against Clinton (S.C.) Thornwell, Friday.

After his trip to the doctor's office, Gray jumped on the practice field.

"It felt great," said Gray. "Doing something again made me feel like I'm part of the team again, actually.

"I was rusty, but I wasn't as bad as I thought I was going to be. I actually did better than I thought I was going to do."

Throughout the injury, the North Carolina staff has remained supportive.

"They were telling me to keep working hard and they're looking forward to me playing again," said Gray. "They want me to come up and see them sometime soon."

Gray, who has never witnessed a Tar Heel game live, is in the process of working out a trip to Chapel Hill for a home game, but hasn't zeroed in on a game just yet.

"I'm trying to work it out with my parents," said Gray. "My parents have been busy and I've been working. But, I plan on going to as many games as I can."

With his work schedule, Gray hasn't been able to even watch a full UNC game this season. However, he's been closely following the team.

"They'll come around," said Gray. "They just need to get things together, but they'll come around."

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