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January 8, 2013

Fitzpatrick transferring to Richmond

According to a school release by the University of Richmond, tight end Sean Fitzpatrick is transferring to the Virginia school after spending the last three seasons at North Carolina, and will play out his remaining two seasons of collegiate eligibility as a Spider.

A native of Pittsford (N.Y.), the 6-5, 245-pound Fitzpatrick arrived in Chapel Hill in January of 2010 as a key piece of an impressive crop of mid-year enrollees that included James Hurst, D.J. Bunn, T.J. Leifheit, and Brandon Willis.

As it turns out, only Hurst has been a productive UNC player out of that particular group, as Willis never played a down for the Tar Heels, transferring back and forth between Chapel Hill and UCLA before finally settling at UCLA in 2011.

Leifheit's career has been set back by numerous injuries (he's never played in a game for the Tar Heels) while Bunn was dismissed in the summer prior to the 2012 season.

Fitzpatrick redshirted the 2010 season and then played sparingly as a backup in 2011, making no catches and seeing the most single-game action (15 plays) in the Independence Bowl loss to Missouri.

In 2012 Fitzpatrick, who was initially recruited to play tight end in the former UNC regime's pro-style offense, found himself playing behind multiple younger players, including Eric Ebron and Jack Tabb.

Spending much of the season injured, Fitzpatrick again failed to record a catch, giving him no tangible game statistics from his two-season playing experience at UNC.

With the UNC coaches looking to recruit tight ends again hard in the Class of 2014 after failing to sign a 2013 tight end, the writing was clearly on the wall for Fitzpatrick, and now he'll have a chance to join Danny Rocco's solid program at Richmond, which went 8-3 overall and 6-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association last fall.

Richmond is also adding former Virginia quarterback Michael Rocco, Danny's nephew, as well as Cornell post-grad Shane Savage.

"We are all very excited about these additions to our program," Rocco said in Richmond's school release. "All three student-athletes have outstanding resumes as well as transferring in from competitiveacademic institutions. Our ability to continue to build depth and to create an element of heightened competition will increase our probability for continued success."


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