In three of the four losses UNC has been in position to win the game or a handful of mistakes away from having a shot at walking out with a victory. Two of those games have been in exceptionally hostile environments and despite the huge problems we saw last week against a South Florida team that could very well be the best team in the Big East you get the feeling that if UNC can just find some consistency by cutting down the mistakes they might be 3-2 or 4-1. Obviously moral victories do not mean anything but today we saw the defense makes several great plays and essentially thwart the Hokies on offense. Granted the VT offense is one of the worst in the ACC, especially on the offensive line but UNC still made plays and it is encouraging to see young players stepping up regardless of who is on the other side of the ball.
The Hokie defense was as good as advertised but at the same time UNC did a fairly decent job of moving the football. Once again turnovers killed drives and snatched potential points off the scoreboard. Nothing worse than having the ball on the goal line and fumbling it way inches from breaking the plane. At some point those breaks starting going your way. I also noticed that the offense was more balanced and does anyone know what the heck got into Anthony Elzy? The sparsely used RB ran 74 yards on 11 carries which was a nice surprise. Ryan Houston say the bulk of the carriers and produced was hit or miss for 55 yards on 18 attempts. In short, the running game continues to be as muddled as the local fishing hole following a thunderstorm. T.J. Yates bounced back from the debacle last week to hit 16 of 25 with only one INT and no TDs. Given how much pressure the Hokies put on Yates with four sacks, the redshirt freshman recovered nicely from what could have been a season killing game last week in Tampa.
In the end it was another frustrating game where miscues and inopportune penalties tipped the scales in favor the opposition. There was a lot of positives to pull from this game but the bottom line is at some point the Heels need to reduced the number of drive killing miscues which have just tipped three of their losses the wrong direction.