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North Carolina Football: Tar Heels All-Decade Team

North Carolina Football: Tar Heels All-Decade Team

North Carolina Football: Tar Heels All-Decade Team

The last 10 years of North Carolina Tar Heels football has featured some very high highs and some deep lows. In 2015, Carolina won 11 games and at one point was ranked No. 8 in America. The last time a UNC team had achieved those marks was in 1997. At 11-1 entering the ACC title game, the Tar Heels would have put themselves into the College Football Playoff discussion had they beaten Clemson.

But three years later, head coach Larry Fedora was fired after consecutive nine-loss seasons, which had not happened since Mack Brown’s first two teams each lost 10 games back in 1988 and '89. Now Brown is making an encore appearance, and there is optimism in Chapel Hill.

Through the ups and downs, many quality players have gone through UNC over the past ten years. Many of them are listed here on the Heels’ All-Decade Team.

QB: Marquise Williams (2012-15)

RB: Elijah Hood (2014-16)

RB: Michael Carter (2017-present)

AP: Giovani Bernard (2010-12)

WR: Ryan Switzer (2013-16)

WR: Quinshad Davis (2012-15)

WR: Dwight Jones (2008-11)

TE: Eric Ebron (2011-13)

C: Lucas Crowley (2013-16)

OL: James Hurst (2010-13)

OL: Jonathan Cooper (2008-12)

OL: Landon Turner (2012-15)

OL: Jonathan Heck (2012-16)

DL: Quinton Coples (2008-11)

DL: Kareem Martin (2010-13)

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DL: Sylvester Williams (2011-12)

DL: Nazair Jones (2013-16)

LB: Cole Holcomb (2015-18)

LB: Kevin Reddick (2009-12)

LB: Zach Brown (2008-11)

CB: M.J. Stewart (2014-17)

CB: Des Lawrence (2013-16)

S: Tre Boston (2010-13)

S: Donnie Miles (2013-17)

K: Casey Barth (2008-12)

P: Thomas Hibbard (2011-14)

RS: Ryan Switzer (2013-16)

Double Dipping: Ryan Switzer

As Carolina’s all-time leader in both receptions and receiving yardage, Switzer was an obvious choice as one of the wide receivers. But with seven career return touchdowns, he claimed the return specialist spot as well.

Toughest Decision: Return Specialist

If Switzer was not the return specialist, the honor would have gone to T.J. Logan, who returned five kicks for scores during his time with the Heels. Logan was also strongly considered as the all-purpose back. Gio Bernard was going to be on the team somewhere, but he could have taken the place of Michael Carter at running back with Logan in the all-purpose spot. But I went with Carter over Logan.

Deepest Position: Quarterback

Mitchell Trubisky and Sam Howell had the best single seasons. Bryn Renner had the most passing yards during the decade. But Marquise Williams had 2,458 yards rushing to go along with his 7.965 passing yards and the 11 wins in 2015 came with Williams taking snaps.

— Written by Jon Kinne, who has been part of the Athlon Contributor Network for three years, covering the ACC and Notre Dame. Follow him on Twitter @JonRKinne.