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2013 North Carolina Tarheels
Schedule and Odds
While North Carolina was banned from postseason play last year, they put together a very nice season considering the circumstances, all with a new coach in Larry Fedora. Their offense scored 40 points per game and the defense was respectable. If you throw out a couple close road losses at Wake Forest and Duke, the Tar Heels were very close to 10 wins. Of course, they also gave up 68 points to Georgia Tech at home which isn't pretty to look at.
With quarterback Bryn Renner and receiver Quinshad Davis back, this offense will try and build on what they had last season. It will be their second year in Fedora's spread attack so improvement should be expected although they lost three offensive lineman and first-team ACC running back Giovani Bernard. Losing a guy that averaged 6.7 yards per carry will always hurt, but A.J. Blue and Romar Morris should be able to fill in nicely. The offensive line will be the main talking point early on because they need Renner to stay healthy and a solid rushing attack.
Seven starters return from the inconsistent defensive unit, but the good news is that they have a full season of the new 4-2-5 formation under their belts. Of course they also lost a couple first-teamers at tackle and linebacker which could hurt early in the season, especially against their rough opening schedule. The hope is that the secondary will improve which returns every starter.
2013 North Carolina Tarheels Football Schedule
Aug. 29 at South Carolina
Sept. 7 vs. MTSU
Sept. 21 at Georgia Tech
Sept. 28 vs. East Carolina
Oct. 5 at Virginia Tech
Oct. 17 vs. Miami (FL)
Oct. 26 vs. Boston College
Nov. 2 at NC State
Nov. 9 vs. Virginia
Nov. 16 at Pittsburgh
Nov. 23 vs. Old Dominion
Nov. 30 vs. Duke
Two of their first three games will be the toughest they have all year as the Tar Heels have to travel to South Carolina and Georgia Tech. Considering how UNC played on the road last year, neither one of these games should be expected wins. From there, their schedule gets much lighter and every game is winnable.
Road contests at Virginia Tech and NC State will be the toughest of the bunch and ultimately the most important games. The Hokies present a tough defense and QB Logan Thomas in his senior season. The good news for the Heels is that they put up 48 points on them last year.
UNC's final four games should be wins unless they have a late-season collapse. With this favorable of a schedule, nine or 10 wins can be expected from the Tar Heels with eight being the absolute minimum. If they can make it to the ACC title game, they'll get to see how good they really are against Florida State or Clemson (both of whom they have skipped in the schedule in two straight seasons). The key for the Tar Heels is improvement and if they can do that on both sides of the ball, good things will be expected.
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