Game Day: Five Questions for UNC-Virginia
Better is probably the wrong word. The offense will certainly function in a different way but the results will determine if it is actually “better” or not. The silver lining surrounding the loss of Bryn Renner to season ending shoulder surgery is Williams had one start under his belt and was splitting time with at quarterback already. He will not be going out there cold and the offensive players are already comfortable with him. When Williams has been given a whole series to work with the results have been encouraging, especially the momentum shifting touchdown drive versus NC State that cut into the Wolfpack’s 10-0 lead. Williams simply needs to do pretty much what he has done so far and there shouldn’t be much drop off in offensive production.
2. Hey, will T.J. Logan finally get going since he got his first touchdown?
Maybe. Logan was really good on UNC’s late touchdown drive versus NC State accounting for 29 of the 67 yards. His touchdown run was right up the gut for 14 yards and his first score as a Tar Heel. UNC is going to need more of that since Williams, who is a run threat, will probably be used less in that capacity as a guard against injury. Chances are Logan will still share his carries with A.J. Blue, Romar Morris and Khris Francis. However, Logan has shown he is the most capable back the Tar Heels have at this stage of the season.
3. Will the offensive line stop holding?
I made the joke during the NC State game that any time a Tar Heel back found a big hole for a nice chunk of yardage, the officials were automatically throwing the flag assuming holding had occurred. The issue is(more or less) that the offensive line is getting dominated. The end result of that is holds get committed or else the defensive player gets loose to destroy the play. So I guess they are at least trying but this isn’t recreational soccer. The offensive line must play without penalties or good drives will continue to be crippled.
4. Have the UNC receivers finally found their groove?
After a season of inconsistency it appears that UNC may have found some solid options outside of Eric Ebron. Bug Howard made some key catches in the win over NC State and Quinshad David found the end zone twice. Both these receivers are big and a nightmare for smaller defensive backs. Couple them with Ebron and the Heels have three good options for Williams to throw to with Sean Tapley and Ryan Switzer picking up some of the slack.
5. What does the road to bowl eligibility look like?
The Tar Heels need to go 3-1 down the stretch to be bowl eligible. Looking at the schedule the two most winnable games are this weekend versus Virginia and two weeks from now against Old Dominion. The other two match-ups are toss-ups. UNC travels to Pittsburgh next week to play a team with a solid defense and a pair of good wide receivers that will test the defense. UNC will host Duke at home to close out the season with the Blue Devils looking every bit like a team that could win 8-9 games if thinks break right. Neither of those two games promise to be easy. And neither will matter that much if the Heels don’t first take care of the game in front of them. The margin of error is very thin but not impossible given the nature of the schedule in the final month.