“Offense sells tickets, but defense wins games.” The phrase that’s been engrained in every athlete’s head.
But, this season, offense will play a key factor in winning games for the UNC football program. Because after losing two senior superstars, the O-line suffered a serious blow.
As for the team as a whole, UNC has a tough middle chunk of their season this year. They play Clemson on their turf, and the atmosphere at Death Valley is tough enough to deal with as a visitor—not to mention the powerhouse football program. After going to a Clemson game a few years ago, it still stands as one of the loudest stadiums I’ve ever been in.
Following Clemson comes Virginia Tech, then Notre Dame and Miami. Not easy feats.
And after a tough media season involving academic scandals that are still being investigated, you would think the football program would have a dismal attitude.
However, UNC boasts a strong second string filled with freshmen and sophomores who are chomping at the bit to get playing time. Add that to two competitive athletes battling it out for the quarterback position, and we’ve got ourselves an interesting season.
So will UNC claim the top spot in the ACC? Will they even have a winning season?
A lot depends on the summer. And after watching the spring game, it seems not much has been decided, and nothing is ever set in stone.
And after talking to a few of the players, their outlooks are positive. Though UNC lost some strong seniors, the team remains motivated.
With everything that has gone on this year, all the negatives, it appears the boys have quite a chip on their shoulder. And the coaching staff takes that and runs with it.
The team has a bulletin board that sparks this motivation. Nothing positive appears on the board though, only negative. If you see any destructive comment made about UNC football online or in a newspaper, you can bet you’ll also be able to find it on their bulletin board.
Which continually adds fuel to the fire. Fire the heels are going to need if they want to turn out a winning season. And as for being first in the ACC, well, in my opinion, I think they’re going to need more than a bulletin board to accomplish that goal.
Last time that happened it was 1980, and it’s only happened four times other than that. If you’re a football player in the ACC then your goal should be to be the best, if it’s not, then you’re not doing it right.
But is that a realistic venture for UNC in the 2014 season? Personally, I don’t see it happening. And as a Tar Heel fan, it pains me to say that. I think the football program is filled with younger people. There’s a lack of leadership. Don’t get me wrong, there are strong upperclassmen, but it’s a young team. I think that’s where the Tar Heels will struggle come fall. Combine lack of playing time with a tough season, and I don’t see an ACC title.
I am predicting another bowl game appearance though. I am predicting a winning season. I am not predicting a top spot in the ACC. It’s an ambitious goal, so cheers to the boys for that. Their positivity alone gives me faith in UNC’s program.
Just not enough to believe in an ACC championship—at least, not yet. But like I said, it all depends on the summer. The summer is going to make or break this team, and until then, everything said now doesn’t matter. Because, like this piece, it’s just a prediction, nothing more.