UNC Football: Key Moments from the Loss to ECU


There is no other way to put it — this loss was embarassing. All week long, the Tar Heel players talked about how this was a revenge game and how it was time for payback after losing 55-31 to the Pirates last season in a game some players admitted that they did not take seriously. On Saturday, it appeared that they did not take this game seriously either. UNC gave 70 points, 39 first downs and a ridiculous 789 yards of total offense. The points and total yards were the most ever given up by a Tar Heel defense in school history. If there is anything positive stemming from the game, it is that this was not a conference game. However, it is doubtful anyone views the Tar Heels as a serious threat for the ACC title — a fact that was made evident by UNC being dropped from the latest ACC bowl projections from ESPN. Here are some key moments from the game.

Key Moments

Allen’s 3-and-28 touchdown run

The biggest play of the game came with just under 4 minutes to play in the 1st half. The Heels had forced the Pirates into a 3rd and 28 and it appeared the Heels were going to get the ball back with a chance to take a halftime lead. Instead, they allowed senior running back Breon Allen to run 44 yards for a touchdown and an give ECU an eight point lead. ECU would score one more touchdown before the half and then return a Marquise Williams interception for a touchdown to open the 2nd half to put the game away.

Heck goes down

The Tar Heels were already without their most experienced lineman Landon Turner who was out with an injury, then with 5 minutes to go in the 1st quarter, perhaps the Heels most talented lineman, Jon Heck, went down with an apparent leg injury which left the Heels with 0 linemen starting experience. The rebuilding job continues along the offensive line.

Fedora plays musical chairs with the QBs

More from UNC Football

As the saying goes, if you have 2 quarterbacks you have no quarterbacks. It appears Larry Fedora is hellbent on creating a quarterback controversy although there should not be one. Marquise Williams had led the Heels to an early 10-7 lead on the team’s first two possessions and appeared to be in an early rhythm so what does Larry Fedora do? He takes him out and replaces him with Mitch Trubisky. To no one’s surprise, this move backfired on Fedora as the offense stalled and was unproductive with Trubisky in the game. Fedora spoke on the QB situation in Monday’s presser…

Only Fedora knows why he continues to insert Trubisky into the game when it is not necessary, the offense looks terrible whenever he comes into the game. He was responsible for the only turnover in the win against San Diego State and once again struggled against the Pirates. When Williams reentered the game, his rhythm was clearly off and his confidence was obviously gone as he was asked once again to bring the Tar Heels from behind. The fact of the matter is that Trubisky does not need to be playing right now at any point unless it is the closing minutes of a blowout win. If Fedora does not realize that soon, he is going to ruin what could have been a special season in Chapel Hill, if he has not done that already.

Missed tackles

Larry Fedora said he counted 34 missed tackles against San Diego State, so the Heels used the bye week to work on fundamentals, including tackling. How did that work out coach? The missed tackles and just general lack of effort on the defensive side of the ball turned this into one of the most embarrassing days in the history of Carolina football. For a program that has produced the likes of Lawrence Taylor, Dre Bly, Julius Peppers, Greg Ellis and Robert Quinn, Saturday’s effort was unacceptable and flat out disrespectful to the all-time defensive greats of this program. From the coaching staff to the players on that side of the ball, they all need to take a long look in the mirror and figure out if they want to help this team compete in the ACC or if they want to destroy this team’s season with more embarrassing displays of defense like the one they put on in Greenville on Saturday. Vic Koenning, Tim Scott and the rest of the defense — the choice is yours.