‘Job’s not finished’: After betting on himself, UNC Charlotte star ready to begin NFL journey

Grant DuBose is leaving the 49ers as one of the best wide receivers in program history.
Grant DuBose is leaving the 49ers as one of the best wide receivers in program history.
Published: Apr. 27, 2023 at 4:56 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Former Charlotte 49ers star Grant DuBose has bet on himself every step of his journey, and now he hopes that bet will pay off during this week’s NFL Draft.

DuBose, an Alabama native, was an overlooked wide receiver coming out of high school, and chose to start his collegiate career at Miles College, a small HBCU in his home state.

In 2020, while preparing for his sophomore season, athletes across the country had their seasons wiped out as the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the world. With no football, he returned home to Montgomery and started bagging groceries at Wal-Mart, and worked on the line at a local car factory.

“My journey hasn’t been the typical journey,” he said. “But I’m grateful for it all...I knew what I wanted in life. I knew that I wanted to be here today.”

He said his journey has put a chip on his shoulder that still remains.

“You getting up, and going to work every day,” is how he described his path to the draft. “You’re working out for an opportunity, but you just never know if an opportunity is gonna present itself.”

Every minute spent at each job redirected his mind back to the football field.

“It was either bet on myself, or stay where I was,” he said. “I knew that’s what I didn’t want.”

DuBose bet on himself in the transfer portal, and the opportunity presented itself in June 2021 when a friend at Charlotte convinced the coaching staff to take a look at him for a tryout. Once he got on the field, it took three routes to see his talent.

“It was a hitch, a dig, and a go,” he said recollecting on the tryout.

Two years later, DuBose is leaving Charlotte as one of the best wideouts the program has ever seen, and is betting on himself again, waiting on the phone to ring one more time.

“You know once I receive that phone call, it’s no telling the type of emotions that’ll be running through me,” he said. “The job’s not finished. It’ll just be the start of something great.”

If DuBose is selected sometime this weekend, he’ll become the first 49er drafted since 2020. Even if he doesn’t hear his named called though, and signs as an undrafted free agent, he’s just looking for the opportunity to bet on himself one more time.

Related: Mallard Creek, Clemson standout nearing NFL dream as draft night approaches