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UNC football recruiting: 5-star QB Justin Fields decommits from Penn State

North Carolina has another chance to recruit one of the best players in his recruitment class

East Carolina v North Carolina Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

UNC football recruiting got a little more interesting in the last few days following the news that five-star quarterback Justin Fields has backed out of his commitment to Penn State. According to Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports, Fields is now considering North Carolina along with Auburn, Florida, Georgia, and Florida State. Penn State also remains in play. This is huge news for UNC, especially if Fields is keeping them in mind.

As the no. 3 player in the class of 2018, he can go anywhere he chooses to go. the Tar Heels offered him last May before getting him on campus for an unofficial visit in August. Following this trip, Fields went on to commit to PSU in December before changing course last week.

This doesn’t mean North Carolina has a particularly strong chance of landing him, because trying to recruit a SEC country native from SEC teams will be a hard thing to manage. To their credit, UNC has done better in Georgia over the last two recruiting classes, so hopefully that keeps up here.

One advantage North Carolina has over the competition is quarterback Mitch Trubisky, who was just selected second overall in the NFL Draft. Not only does that mean the quarterback job is wide open, it also gives them an example as to what they can offer Fields, who is likely destined to be a star. Recent grad transfer Brandon Harris will be the team’s starting quarterback for much of the season, but the position beyond 2017 is completely unknown. Fields would have the opportunity to play almost immediately and would be the team’s starting quarterback by his sophomore season at the latest.

We talk about the type of prospect UNC needs to land in order to be taken seriously as an elite program, and Justin Fields is exactly that. Hopefully they can bring him to campus before too long so they can give him their best pitch.