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Boston College Football 2013 Previews: North Carolina Tar Heels

A preview of the 2013 UNC Tar Heels

Scott Halleran

We are now up to Week 8 of the upcoming Boston College 2013 football season. In Week 1 we took a look at Villanova football, a look at the history of the series, an indepth look at QB John Robertson and an interview with 'Nova Blog In May we dived into the difficult challenge of covering Michael Campanaro, and how BC can get on the right foot again against their #rivals. Earlier this month ago we looked at USC, last week we looked at Boston College Atlantic Division nemesis, the Florida State Seminoles. We checked in on Army, last week we looked at a daunting matchup in Death Valley.

Boston College has it's first ACC Coastal game of the season on October 26th and it's a doozy, against the UNC Tar Heels in Chapel Hill. This could be one of the toughest matchups for the Eagles this season. BC and North Carolina have a bit of a history, with the Tar Heels leading historically 4-2.

Boston College had one of their most historic wins, when they defeated UNC in 2004 in the Continental Tire Bowl. This was the memorable game when starting quarterback Paul Peterson went down with a leg injury and a young Matt Ryan entered the game and led the team downfield en route to a game winning field goal by kicker Ryan Ohliger.

The most recent matchup for the two was in 2009 when the Tar Heels destroyed the Eagles 31-13 at Alumni Stadium, on two touchdowns by running back Ryan Houston. Uncle Dave Shinskie struggled as well, and the UNC defense had two scoring touchdowns on defense. This game was an eerie shadow of things to come during the Frank Spaziani era.

Lots has changed for both teams since the Eagles and Tar Heels played in 2009. Both teams have new coaches, with Larry Fedora leading the Heels and Steve Addazio with Boston College. Both teams did not make a bowl last year, Boston College because the team lost 10 games, and UNC due to academic fraud and failure to monitor their program.

UNC has always been known for having a stout defense, but like Boston College they regressed last year. After the graduation of Quinton Coples and Zach Brown, UNC fell from 49th in the country to 60th. Not as big of a drop as the Eagles but a drop nonetheless. This year the front seven lost DT Sylvester Williams and LB Kevin Reddick, but the UNC secondary will be a force to reckon with anchored by Tim Scott and Dre Boston.

On offense the Tar Heels will be returning one of the most underrated quarterbacks in the ACC, Bryn Renner. Though he didn't get the acclaim as Tajh Boyd and E.J. Manuel, he finished 4th in yards, and 3rd in passer ratings. The running game will be in need of someone to step up as Giovanni Bernard left after his sophomore year and was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals. Look to a committee by approach with physical bruiser A.J. Blue and Romar Morris getting the carries.

Things You Need To Know About UNC:

Head Coach: Larry Fedora, 8-4 record
Leading Returning Passer: Bryn Renner, 276-422, 3356 yards, 28 touchdowns, 7 interceptions
Leading Returning Rusher: A.J. Blue, 82 attempts, 433 yards, 8 touchdowns
Leading Returning Receiver: Quinshad Davis, 61 catches 776 yards, five touchdowns
Recent Success: Kind of sort of, didn't really win the ACC Coastal in 2012
Famous Alumni: Alge Crumpler, Greg Ellis, Vonnie Holiday, Hakeem Nicks, Julius Peppers, Jeff Saturday

UNC Twitter Accounts To Follow:
UNC Athletics: @GOHeels
UNC Football: @TarHeelFootball
UNC SB Nation Blog: @TarHeelBlog

Upcoming Schedule for North Carolina Week:
Wednesday: Previewing Bryn Renner
Thursday: Boston College's Key To Victory