So North Carolina got beat 27-10 to South Carolina. It wasn’t a particularly close game either. What I don’t understand is the gross generalizations that come from a game like this. The Tar Heels are awful, ACC football is awful. It’s more of the same year after year. Look this game doesn’t change anything about the UNC or the ACC going into the season.
I did feel like North Carolina could compete in this game and possibly take the game into 4th qtr, but it was tough matchup. South Carolina is a legit top 10 SEC power playing on their home field, against a Tar Heel team that was not the best, 2nd best, or even 3rd best ACC team. Clemson, FSU, and Miami are better. Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech are arguably better. Heck UNC gave up 68 to Georgia Tech last season.
What you had here was very good SEC team playing a slight above average ACC team. The result was a 17 point loss. Does that really sound shocking? Now what did sound weak was the South Carolina fans chant of “SEC” “SEC”. I’m a conference guy. I certainly root for the other ACC teams out of conference as well as my favorite teams, but rooting your conference pride vs an overmatched opponent is kind of over doing it. Please Clemson or FSU don’t ever chant “ACC” “ACC” if you beat Kentucky in football. Pound your chest if you beat a comparable opponent, not over one your are a double digit favorite to beat.
Back to North Carolina…
The Tar Heels don’t have to be ashamed of their performance. After falling behind 17-0, it looked they were about to be run out of Columbia. Bryn Renner proved that he’s a strong passer. As I said Eric Ebron is the best TE in the ACC, and he was solid tonight when given opportunities. The Tar Heels have weapons on offense, and their fast paced offense had the Gamecocks defense gassed. Against teams with less defensive depth, you could see the Tar Heels really rolling up some points. The offensive line even got a decent push against a good South Carolina defensive front.
The defense was suspect last year, and still is. The deficiencies there will only be made up through the recruiting.There just isn’t much talent on that side of the ball. The Tar Heels defense is going to give up some major points and yardage this season. UNC will benefit from a soft schedule, and I saw enough tonight that I could still see the Heels going 8-4 (5-3) as I predicted earlier this summer.
North Carolina can play better, but tonight they simply lost to a team that was better.