Originally written February 01, 2013 on State of the Texans:
A star running back from the University of North Carolina, Giovani Bernard was the top playmaker on the UNC offense. We talked with Doc Kennedy of the Tar Heel Blog, a North Carolina Tar Heels community on SB Nation, about the two-time first-team All-ACC selection. Tale of the Tape Height- 5’ 10” Weight- 205 pounds Class- RS Sophomore   Can you give some background info on him and a quick overview of his career? Bernard was a star coming out of high school in Miami. He injured his knee during preseason practice his freshman year at Carolina but quickly lived up to his billing as he became the first UNC running back in 14 years to rush for over 1,000 yards in 2011. He followed that up with a 2012 season that saw him lead the nation in punt returns while leading the ACC in rushing, return yards, and all purpose yards. He ran for over 1,200 yards this season in only 9 1/2 games, as he was injured in the first half of the season opener and missed the next two games. He was first-team All-ACC both seasons.   What are his strengths and weaknesses? He is a multi-faceted player who can run, catch, and do it all. He has a knack for finding holes and squirting through for positive yardage. He is also a great pass receiver, with 92 catches in his two years at Carolina.  He scored touchdowns this season rushing, receiving, and twice in kick returns. His main drawback is that he is on the small side (5-10, 205). Plus, while he is quick, especially laterally, he does not have breakaway speed. He reads his blocks exceptionally well and that is what gets him into open space.   He is one of the few RS sophomores coming out this year.  Do you know why he is leaving after only two seasons and do you think he is ready for the NFL? It may just be a matter of striking while the iron is hot. There is really nothing else he can accomplish at UNC and his stock may never be higher than it is right now. He is as ready for the NFL as he will ever be.   Do you see him as a running back that can handle 20+ carries a game in the NFL? Not really, but I’m not sure that’s where NFL teams will be looking at him, given his abilities in the return game. He would certainly have to bulk up to endure that level of capacity in the NFL.   Where would you rank him among top running backs in UNC history? Many people don’t know that for many years North Carolina led the nation in the number of 1,000-yard backs. If he had stayed for a 3rd year and put up the same kind of numbers he did in his first two years, he would probably be on the Mt. Rushmore of UNC running backs. As it is, he is 10th on the all-time rushing list in just two years and will always have a special place in the heart of Tar Heel fans because of the punt return TD against NC State that ended a five-year losing streak to a hated rival.   You can follow Doc on Twitter @DocHeelfire and the blog @TarHeelBlog.        

Brain study finds 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Five things to watch in the AL Wild Card game

Tony Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

Eli on Geno Smith: If fans yell at you, you probably deserve it

49ers players come out in support of Jim Harbaugh

Raiders reportedly expected to make a run at Jon Gruden


FCC unanimously ends sports blackout rule

Michael Phelps arrested for DUI

Is hiring Mack Brown a real possibility for SMU Mustangs?

NFL: Abdullah should not have been penalized for praying

Belichick: Pats 'didn't play well enough at all' against Chiefs

Astros new manager A.J. Hinch: ‘Goal is to win championships’

Marlins president: We're not trading Giancarlo Stanton

Heckling Knicks fan suing team over ejection

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe: Iggy Azalea has had better career than Swaggy P

College football's post-Week 5 playoff projection

Oregon to don pink-themed unis for breast cancer awareness

Is DeMarco Murray the best RB in the NFL?

WATCH: TBS sends up 'Boom Goes the Dynamite' with promo

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

NFL Awards: Week 4 edition

The best and worst MLB players in September

Tracking demanding career paths of all Top 25 head coaches

Tar Heels News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Marlins: We're not trading Stanton

Study: 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

AL Wild Card preview

Heckling fan sues Knicks over ejection

Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe chooses Iggy over Swaggy P

Raiders to make a run at Jon Gruden?

Is DeMarco Murray the NFL's best RB?

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

NFL Awards: Week 4 edition

Michael Phelps arrested for DUI

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.