2009 North Carolina Tar Heels Football Preview
2009 North Carolina Tar Heels season preview from Maddux Sports. Below you can find our official North Carolina Tar Heels football preview as well as the 2009 North Carolina Tar Heels Football Schedule. When betting on college football against the bookmakers odds dont dismiss our NCAA football picks to help build your bankroll this year.
Coach: Butch Davis (3rd year at North Carolina)
Team Name: Tar Heels
2008 Overall Record: 8-5
Returning Starters: 15
In 2008, the Tar Heels of North Carolina (8- 5 overall, 4- 4 ACC Coastal) ended the season tied for third. The club went to its first bowl game in four years as they played West Virginia in the Meineke Car Care Bowl. It was a close contest as the Heels lost 30- 31. This season, the Tar Heels return seven on offense and nine on defense. That should be a big help in getting them to the next level.
The Heels have fielded a solid passing game over the past few seasons. Quarterback T.J. Yates (135 ATT, 81 COMP, 1,168 YDs, 4 INTs, 11 TDs) is an accurate, savvy field general. His biggest problem will be the loss of five of six players on the receiving squad. Greg Little (11 REC, 146 YDs, 0 TD), who is back, averaged 13.3 YPC and Anthony Elzy (7 REC, 86 YDs, 0 TD) was good for 12.3 YPC. Look for the Tar Heels to utilize the run more than they did last season. Junior tailback Shaun Draughn (198 ATT, 866 YDs, 3 TDs) and the versatile Little (78 ATT, 339 YDs, 3 TDs) are both fine ground gainers. The offensive line brings back four starters, which should be a big help.
Last season the team put an average of 27.7 PPG on the board while holding opponents to 21.2 PPG. The first stat got them a national ranking of 44th and the second a ranking of 32nd. The entire starting frontline returns and two-thirds of the linebacking unit comes back. Although the defensive did well in forcing turnovers (29), they had a tough time holding the line on third downs (43.2% success rate). Backers Bruce Carter (68 tackles, 5 sacks) and Quan Sturdivant (122 tackles, 87 solo, 2 sacks) are powerful forces. In the secondary, corner Kendric Burney (3 INTs) and free safety Deunta Williams (3 INTs) offer excellent speed, smarts and coverage.
On special teams, Casey Barth and Jay Wooten have both proven to be capable. On kick returns, Johnny White and Little are first-rate. The punting job looks to go to new guy Grant Schallock who looked more than capable in the spring. The punt return game is a question mark.
Head coach Butch Davis (12- 13 over two years at North Carolina) won four more games than he did in his first season at the helm of the Heels. Returning talent and an impressive freshman class that includes wide receiver Jheranie Boyd and D-end Donte Moss are both big plusses. SEC Champs East Carolina visit on September 19. That’s a big game. The September 26 game versus Georgia Tech is also huge. Last season, North Carolina beat Georgia Tech 28- 7. An upset of the FSU Seminoles on October 22 is not probable, but you never know. If the Tar Heels can win eight again this year and go to a bowl game, their season will be a success. A third-place finish and a lower tier bowl game are both likely.
North Carolina Tar Heels Football Schedule
|9/19/2009||North Carolina||East Carolina||home|
|9/26/2009||North Carolina||Georgia Tech||away|
|10/10/2009||North Carolina||Georgia Southern||home|
|10/22/2009||North Carolina||Florida St.||home|
|10/29/2009||North Carolina||Virginia Tech||away|
|11/14/2009||North Carolina||Miami (FL)||home|
|11/21/2009||North Carolina||Boston Coll.||away|
|11/28/2009||North Carolina||N.C. State||away|
For more info on the 2009 North Carolina Tar Heels football program, view the Tar Heels sports website or scroll down below to read up on the rest of the ACC foes.