North Carolina to start Howell at QB against South Carolina


CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina is starting true freshman Sam Howell at quarterback for Saturday’s opener against South Carolina in Charlotte.

Howell started preseason camp in a three-way battle for the starting job with redshirt freshmen Jace Ruder and Cade Fortin. But new coach Mack Brown said Aug. 18 that Howell would start working with the first-team offense in preseason practices, and Howell remained in control of the job.

As a result, Ruder is now the backup on Monday’s depth chart while Fortin has informed the team of his plan to transfer.

Howell will be the first true freshman to start a season opener for North Carolina in school history.

Brown said Monday other schools have contacted the Tar Heels about Fortin and that they were “very, very positive” in supporting Fortin’s efforts. Brown also said walk-on freshman Vincent Amendola will now serve as the team’s No. 3 quarterback.

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