2017 ACC Football: Coastal Division Power Rankings week 11

PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 09: Cayson Collins
PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 09: Cayson Collins /
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PITTSBURGH, PA – NOVEMBER 09: Nathan Elliott
PITTSBURGH, PA – NOVEMBER 09: Nathan Elliott /

Live Like You Were Dying

For a recap of the game against Pittsburgh, click here

Does North Carolina really have any other way to play this season? They already have eight losses, meaning they can’t sneak into a bowl game. All that is left to do is play for pride. So with nothing to lose, they played that way.

At least, that was my interpretation of how they beat Pitt on Thursday night. Streak superstition is all fun and good, but the other team has to do their part too, and UNC came to play.

Let’s start with the defense that came out and did their job. Sure they let Darrin Hall have 121 rushing yards and four touchdowns, but he had to earn every inch. They also did a good job of getting to the quarterback, sacking him three times.

Nathan Elliott also played as though he had nothing to lose. The former third string quarterback came out and once again moved the offense with aplomb, much like he did against Miami. However, unlike against Miami, he threw a few less interceptions and a few more touchdowns.

Elliott finished the game 20-of-31 for 235 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. Elliott continues to make people wonder why he was the third string quarterback for so long this season.

However, no one epitomized the live like you were dying philosophy better than Anthony Ratliff-Williams. The sophomore wide receiver has easily been the team’s offensive MVP this season and was the biggest reason the Tar Heels got their first conference win.

Ratliff-Williams opened the game with a 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. He also threw a touchdown and caught a touchdown. The only problem was that he only touched the ball six times on offense.

The Tar Heels will have to continue this attitude again this week if they plan to get their first home win of the season. The opponent is Western Carolina, but the Catamounts are 7-4 this season and could be a stumble if the Tar Heels don’t live for the moment.