It's Going To Take More Than Blue T-Shirts
After having our tickets punched by the football gods for the Georgia Tech game, I think we failed to even have a ticket for Louisville debacle. Before the game, I felt like the defense would have a tough day, but it never occurred to me that the offense wouldn't show up. Our strongest weapon fails to fire at all, and, if that continues, I'm afraid we are in for a miserable few weeks ahead.
Again, I didn't travel to Chapel Hill even though I had another invitation, and this time I experienced a Carolina game from an entirely different perspective. I watched the game in a sports bar. I have seen UNC games in a sports bar before but not at the level as yesterday. I went to Bailey's here in Richmond (43 TVs) and experienced a game from the vantage point of fans who are not able to attend the game, but who are assembled in significant numbers to cheer their teams on. That is, for all the teams except UNC. The only people in the house cheering for the Heels were me and one of the Managers at Bailey's.
It's not quite as bad as it sounds. Most of the fans were interested in watching the Virginia Tech-State game and a lot were warming up for the Alabama-Arkansas game. Side by side were the games involving UNC, State, Duke and Wake Forest. The Virginia Tech interest was understandable since we were smack dab in the middle of Hokie country, but the silence was deafening when Tech missed that last second field goal. I'm not ordinarily a Tech fan, but I have to admit I felt sorry for them when the field goal failed. Some of the fans had trouble accepting the fact that the field goal had actually been missed. I guess it was the scenario that unfolded that made the miss so dramatic. Think of the jubilation that would have occurred if the FG had been good. The crowd would have run onto the field and the fraternity parties would have begun and might still be going. The kicker would have been the hero of the hour, but as it is, he will probably never forget that miss as long as he lives. I have never forgotten Dave Braine, now the Athletics Director at Georgia Tech, fumbling the ball near the end of a Duke game in Kenan in the early 60s when all we had to do was to run out the clock. Duke kicked a field goal and won the game. Ah, the ecstasy of victory and the agony of defeat.
A couple of things about the Louisville game that were interesting. The announcers were very good for a local broadcast (GamePlan picked up the game from a Louisville TV Station feed.) Prior to the game, one of the announcers did garble a couple of words that was comical. He tried to say "Here in beautiful Kenan Stadium" but it came out "Here in beautiful Senan Kadium."
I missed the kickoff. I was watching a commercial the TV folks thought I had rather see. I didn't find out until this morning that Louisville won the toss and I was relieved. I thought maybe we would do what we did against Virginia. Win the toss and then defer. I still don't understand that decision and I don't care what anyone says, the head coach has to answer for it. Does any team anywhere not go over this kind of thing before the coin toss.? I don't think so.
The fake punt was great. I don't know why we aren't more deceptive in our offense. The fake worked, but this kind of play is rarely called by our "offensive genius" Gary Tranquill. Those were Coach Bunting's words, not mine. After the game, I had to chuckle at what one of the announcers said about Carolina was going to pull out "all the stops" in this game. Maybe they got this from our Chancellor who knows that "Pulling out all the stops" probably comes from organ terminology.
Pulling out the stops means maximum output for a particular sound. If we pulled out all the stops against Louisville, I shudder to think what the outcome would have been had we not done so.
I've got to be careful in my writing because I, like a lot of UNC fans, can feel the frustration and anger building in me and I don't want to say something I will regret. It's been a long time since I had a real good feeling about the long range prospects for UNC football, and I certainly don't feel good about the future this morning. We have a lot of pain ahead of us this year, and I'm afraid the hole we are in will be there for years to come. It's much deeper than I thought.
If some of the better recruits were waiting to see how the UNC season goes, I'm afraid they have not been impressed by what they have seen so far. We probably should not expect recruits like Baker and Nicholson to be visualizing them selves in Carolina blue after watching four games, and we haven't even hit the tough part of the schedule yet. Just think.
We have State, Miami, and Virginia Tech left to play at home. How many days did you say were left until basketball begins.
Much talk today on the boards about the recruit Roy had with him at the game. My next door neighbor, who went to the game, saw him and said he was one big man. Viewers on one message board have convinced themselves it was Bynum. If so, that is exciting because I believe Roy had an in home with Bynum earlier in the week. I was under the impression that Bynum was going to visit officially at a later date, possibly for Midnight With Roy, but unofficial information doesn't flow as easily from the basketball office as it did under Doherty. I think Coach Williams' policy regarding recruiting activities is what it should be, and I have faith he knows what he is doing.
The Carolina Blue T-Shirts looked great on TV, but they were more subtle than those for teams with red or orange as their school colors. One of the announcers called the blue, "Baby Blue" and the other one corrected him by saying, "Its Carolina Blue." That may have been the highlight of the day for me.