They say to always release bad news on a Friday, right?
Well, the NCAA has never been the most savvy of institutions, so they got it backwards and surprised us with some good news: Antonio Williams is eligible to play for the Heels in 2018!
The New London, N.C. junior was a four-star running back in the class of 2015, and saw snaps as a third-stringer in his first two years at Ohio State. Slated behind J.K. Dobbins and Mike Weber again this year, Williams made the decision late in the spring to return home.
UNC applied for a waiver to allow Williams to be immediately eligible. Usually called the “hardship waiver”, the NCAA grants this when a transfers closer to home to be with an ailing relative or loved one. For the sake of the Williams family, one hopes they embellished on the ‘hardship’ aspect or that said loved one is happy and healthy.
This is what I wrote breaking down Williams’ game when his intent to transfer was announced. Apparently, ESPN took down the video from which I screengrabbed some GIFs of him in action. Essentially, Carolina adds a running back who has no real weaknesses in his game— his balance and vision are probably his two best traits, a la Gio Bernard with a little less speed and a little more power.
The Heels already returned the only two scholarship running backs to see action in 2017, as Jordon Brown and Michael Carter return their 1,171 yards and 12 combined touchdowns. With Williams in the fold, the Heels now have three proven threats to help the questionable group at quarterback and the in-flux offensive line.