UNC’s Anthony Harris enters transfer gate

CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina — Anthony Harris will no longer wear the North Carolina uniform. The redshirted second-year keeper, who has been sidelined for undisclosed reasons since early January, will be traded. He entered the NCAA transfer portal on Wednesday afternoon, sources confirm.

“After much prayer and discussion with my family, I have decided to register my name on the transfer portal,” Harris said in a social media statement later Wednesday. “It has been an honor to be part of the UNC family. Thank you for your continued support throughout my time here. To the coaches and staff, thank you for everything. To my teammates, I will cherish the brotherhood and many memories and wish y’all the best. Tar Heel fans, y’all are the best.”

The 6-foot-4 native of Woodbridge, Va., played in 14 games during the 2021-22 season, averaging 2.6 points in 11.8 minutes per game. He trained and traveled with the team when he was unable to play, and was included in the on-field net-cutting ceremony when the team celebrated arriving in the Final Four.

UNC head coach Hubert Davis chose not to explain Harris’ inability to play, and the program’s term for him was simply “unavailable.”

“Anthony has worked hard to become a valuable contributor to our team,” Davis said in a statement when Harris went off dress in January. “We are disappointed for Anthony and our team, but he will continue to contribute and we know he will work hard to be able to play for us again next season.”

When asked to follow up at a press conference later in the week, Davis added: “I love coaching him. I love being with him every day. I love that he’s part of the team, this program and this university. I love Ant.”

Anthony Harris (Photo: Jim Hawkins/Inside Carolina)

Harris committed to North Carolina in the spring of 2019 after opting out of signing with Virginia Tech. He earned a reputation at Fairfax (Va.) Paul VI High School and on the prestigious EYBL Travel Tour with Team Takeover as a competitive, offensive guard and aggressive defender. But the start of his Tar Heel career ran into some major hurdles.

He tore the ACL in his left knee in December 2018 during his senior season at Paul VI and only made his Tar Heel debut on December 8, 2019 against Virginia. Three weeks later, Harris tore the ACL in his right knee, sidelining him until January 2021.

Harris had 122 points and 32 assists in 35 career games at UNC.

“Ant is one of those guys with the way he plays, especially in big games like Purdue for example, he kind of starts a fire. He’ll get a big steal or hit a big corner three. Ant was the one of those guys,” said UNC big man Armando Bacot, who was his longtime Team Takeover teammate, earlier this season when the news broke. “…I mean, it’s just a little sad. Me playing with Ant – we’ve been on the same team since seventh grade. He’s my roommate. He’s been my roommate since we’ve been here. C He’s my roommate when we go on trips. So it’s definitely something difficult.”

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