Where: Kenan Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC
When: Saturday, October 13th, 3:30 PM
TV: ABC Regional
Records: UNC 2-4; SCAR 5-1
The real Carolina?
Spurrier returns to Chapel Hill
Take your pick of the various storylines on this one. The only one I care about is the upstart Tar Heels in the first season of the Butch Davis era are looking to pull of the big upset over the #7 ranked team in the country and conincidentally happens to be South Carolina and coached by Steve Spurrier. So the upset is the cake, being SCAR is the icing and beating Spurrier would be the cherry on top.
Of course on paper this is a bit of a mismatch. SCAR boasts the best pass defense in the nation versus an passing offense which has been very good except for the game versus South Florida. SCAR has an anemic run defense which is probably fine for them because it is not like UNC has been burning up the ground game. That being said, Anthony Elzy has been quite acceptable during the past two games running the ball so there is a chance he can continue that tomorrow. Yates has shown he can persevere under pressure but I would be lying if I said I was not concerned by the fact SCAR gave UK’s Andre Woodson so much trouble. The real question on offense is how much can Butch Davis deploy Brandon Tate. After last week when he took the end around for 54 yards to go along with his prowess on returns and receiving I am begging Davis to use Tate in every way possible. His versatility could be the X factor that gives the Gamecock defense fits and opens up other parts of the offense.
Now on the defensive side, UNC has shown some steady improvement. Granted the opposing offense have been less daunting than SCAR’s could be tomorrow but the general feeling I have gotten from watching this defense is they seem to be more comfortable with the scheme and playing at a higher level. The SCAR offense can get it done in an efficient enough manner to beat UNC, especially if the defense shuts down the Heels offense. Some turnovers would be very much in order to make this the task of slowing down SCAR much easier.
I am convinced UNC can stay in the game with SCAR and if we can see a repeat of the way UNC played in the first half against Miami UNC can not only stay in the game but win it. Kenan should be rocking and UNC can take advantage of the home crowd to send Spurrier back to Columbia with another loss to brood over for another nine years.