Will North Carolina be able to compete in the post season this year? The answer is no. But the Heels were impressive in their first game under new coach Larry Fedora. Tarheel fans have a new fast paced offense, and had limited mistakes in the season opener. Despite not being eligible for the post season, this could still be a good year for UNC.
KEEPINGITHEEL – The North Carolina Tar Heels absolutely killed Elon Phoenix in the opener. The game went perfect for Larry Fedora in his UNC head coaching debut. You can’t ask for much more than a 62-0 start to your tenure in a new place and that’s just what Fedora got. His team was well prepared, focused and despite learning new systems on both sides of the ball, looked pretty efficient.
The praise has poured in for the Heels who were 29th in the AP this week and could conceivably enter the Top 25 with a win this weekend against Wake Forest. Running back Giovanni Bernard who put up over 200 all purpose yards while scoring three touchdowns in three different ways (rushing, receiving, punt return) and suddenly he’s on the Hornung Honor Roll for the Paul Hornung Award. He also being mentioned as a potential outside Heisman candidate and people are actually serious now.
The defense looked good, the offense looked almost great at times and the special teams set records, not bad at all. Just don’t get over excited Tar Heel Nation. Yes that was a great game, yes UNC looks like they can win a decent amount of games. Yes I can forsee this team doing even better in 2013 with the help of a very good recruiting class Fedora has put together.
But then again, it was Elon folks and UNC didn’t exactly take the foot off the gas in this game at all. I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, at least I hope not. This team could very well be good, but don’t start day dreaming about a top 20 or better finish this year because it’s not going to happen.
They didn’t take their foot off the gas but took their quarterback and starting running back out for the second half. If that isn’t taking the foot off the gas I don’t know what is. But still, it was an inferrior opponent.
The changes in schemes on both sides of the ball will take some work, growing pains will happen. Gio Bernard is probably going to be a big time NFL player one day and will have more games like he had at Elon. Just don’t expect 14 different players to catch passes and the Heels 4-2-5 defense to look like the San Francisco 49ers D all year.
No matter what the biggest thing this team needs is to grow together and they need the fan bases support. The Tar Pit was great on Saturday, but empty seats remained. A new era is upon us and Tar Heel football has a real chance of turning things around. Just don’t expect it to be done overnight, and don’t think your fan support isn’t needed, because the program may need it now more than ever.
Tarheel fans don’t show up though. UNC just does not have the fan support for football games like NC State and other in state rival ECU. Sure, for a more formidable opponent more fans will show. The tailgating at UNC is almost non existent. Unfortunately I do not see that changing, ever. Hopefully more fans will begin to come out and show support for a program that has been thru a lot the past few years that is talked about so much, I see no need to mention it in detail. Good to see the boys out there playing their hearts out knowing they will not be able to compete in the post season this year.
The Tarheels will travel to Winston Salem on Saturday to take on the Demon Deacons from Wake Forest. Wake Forest struggled to beat Liberty at home last weekend. They pulled out a close game late, winning 20-17.