While the standard disclaimers apply, this is exactly the kind of performance you want to see from a team playing an FCS school.
From the moment he was introduced, Larry Fedora promised a high octane offense that would put points on the board with such frequency, any attempt to quench your thirst at the concession stand would result in missing a touchdown. He was right and while this was an FCS school, it was still am impressive display by the offense. On the defensive side of the ball, Sylvester Williams, Tim Scott and Jabari Price were huge parts of a defensive shutout during which Elon rarely crossed into Tar Heel territory.
The star of the day was Gio Bernard who was incredible impressive despite not playing the full game due to some discomfort in his left knee near the end of the first half. Fedora said after the game, Bernard could have played but there was no need since the Heels went into the locker room up 41-0. Bernard broke off two huge runs, one a 59-yard touchdown run from scrimmage and a 70-yard punt return for a touchdown. Bernard also added a touchdown reception for three scores on the day. Near the end of the first half, Bernard went to the locker room and did not return. UNC said it was due discomfort in his left knee. Romar Morris and A.J. Blue filled in for Bernard the rest of the day who ended up with 93 yards rushing on nine carries, 100 yards on punt returns and 10 yards receiving. Feel free to guess what he would have done with 5-10 more carries and a punt return or two more.
In the passing game Bryn Renner was solid going 14-21 for 236 yards and three touchdowns. Fedora pulled Renner midway through the third quarter to give Marquise Williams some snaps. As advertised, Renner and Williams hit multiple receivers all day long, 14 in all. TE Eric Ebron was the biggest recipient with 53 yards and one touchdown. Erik Highsmith had 44 yards receiving. TE Jack Tabb and WR Jhay Boyd also caught TD passes. Renner's only miscue of the day was an INT that wasn't really all that egregious.
On the defensive side of the ball, UNC was fairly relentless. There were a couple of series where Elon found some gaps in the defense owed some to miss assignments. On one of those drives, Elon got inside the 20 where Sylvester Williams tipped a pass that was picked off by Jabari Price. Tim Scott also registered an interception while Williams spent a fair amount of time dominating the Elon offensive line and making his presence known in the backfield.
UNC's 62 points was three short of the single game record and had it not been for an odd fumble by A.J. Blue in the red zone the Heels may have gotten there. UNC also broke a decades old record for punt return yardage racking up 260. Roy Smith filled in for Bernard and looked very good in the role. In fact UNC did not put pressure on the punter at all with a focus on setting up the return. It was effective for a boatload of yards and a touchdown.
Overall it was a well played game by the Heels. They played in a very disciplined manner with few penalties and also brought plenty of intensity. Fedora said he thought there was room for improvement in terms of the execution of the pace but overall it was a good day where UNC did exactly what it was suppose to do versus an inferior opponent.