School is back in session at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and that means that we are about to dive head first right into another year of Tar Heel athletics. A few of the fall sports have already kicked off for UNC and football is set to open up its season this coming weekend meaning that the balance of life is slowly beginning to restore itself. It’s a funny thing, watching the students interact with the big athletes on campus.
I remember being in college and always telling my friends which players from the football team were in my class or which players from the basketball team were in my study group. It almost turned into a contest of sorts because you wanted to be friends with all of these people that would go represent your school on the field of battle night in and night out. We almost forget that they’re all regular people that are there to do the same thing every regular student is and that is go to school. The fact that they play big time college sports and get seen on ESPN once or twice a week tends to make us forget sometimes. Hey, that’s why we love it!
I mentioned football being in action this weekend earlier, but both men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, field hockey, and cross country all have big games coming up this weekend as well. This is such an exciting time for UNC fans in general because there are very few universities that can make national headlines and can compete nationally in virtually every sport. Here in Chapel Hill, we get spoiled with so many great teams every year.
How many schools can say that they have won at least one national championship in at least 6 different sports? The answer is not many. How many schools besides UNC get to say they are home to a 21 time national champion team? The answer is zero. Here’s a stat that may blow your mind, since 1981 North Carolina has won at least one national championship every year with the exception of three. That means that 28 out of the past 31 years, UNC has brought home the ultimate prize at least once. 1998, 2002, and 2010 are the only three years not to represented in that span.
Women’s soccer clearly carries the bulk of the streak on their shoulders having won the NCAA title 21 times in 31 years. The program has won more national championships than the rest of the university’s sports teams have combined (19). An impressive feat none the less, but UNC has found success in other areas most notably in men’s basketball. Women’s basketball, field hockey, men’s lacrosse and men’s soccer, who currently is defending a title, have also brought back glory to Chapel Hill.
With so many talented programs and athletes in one school, it’s easy to understand how much pride and love we have and share for UNC athletics. Now it’s time to welcome in another year of tradition and excellence. I challenge all Tar Heel fans to show your love to every team that wears Carolina blue and help cheer on our men and women on their quest to bring back the university’s 41st national championship.