Where: Kenan Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC
When: Saturday, September 1st, 12:30 PM
TV: ACC Network
Records: Season opener for both teams.
And thus began the Larry Fedora era.
Season openers are always fun. Season openers with a new coach and new schemes on both sides of the ball even more so. You come into the game with a higher level of anticipation and with a lot of questions. What will the offense look like? How will the defense respond? Most importantly, everyone is just happy to see Tar Heel football on the field again.
Since this is your run-of-the-mill opener vs a FCS school, there should not be any concern about winning the game. UNC should win since it has the talent and personnel to outmatch Elon. The focus will be on the execution since we are talking about players playing in a new scheme. Season openers are also can be ragged at times and that would not be unusual here. However, there is an expectation that UNC will have a strong outing despite it being the first game out of the gate.
There is also the element of UNC making a statement in the first game by posting a big number against Elon. Larry Fedora promised an explosive, fast paced offense. In that respect anything less than about 40-50 points is probably going to be seen as a disappointment(no offense to Elon intended.) The defensive side of the ball provides more mystery. I think the offense will perform as advertised but the question will be whether the defense can get stops and keep Elon out of the end zone.
Ultimately, season openers against FCS schools is a nice first run to see what a team looks like. You really cannot draw any definitive conclusions from such a game other than getting a feel for what the new schemes look like and how the personnel will function in them. Regardless it will be fun to simply have Tar Heel football back.
UNC 48 Elon 20