I really don't know what to say.
As this game plodded along in such a frustrating and inexplicable manner I was tossing all sorts of things out there in a vain effort to try and explain it.
-UNC didn't take Louisville seriously
-This was a letdown game after winning a big rivalry game versus ECU
-No one bothered to game plan the Cardinals.
-The team was too distracted by the gleam of aluminum
-Louisville is better than people think they are.
-Everyone went out Friday night and got drunk
-Dawn Bunting was watching with a voodoo doll
This really was a craptastic effort by every measure. Since Doc is away this weekend I was going to handle Good Bad and Ugly this week. For awhile now I thought there would be no good unless they won then I would count that. About everything that could go wrong seemingly went wrong earlier. The only reason UL had not scored by halftime is because the Cardinals FG kicker was worse than UNC had played to that point. It was just a rough day which started with Gio Bernard struggling to get going to Bryn Renner's inability to throw a decent pass all day.
The UL defensive front had something to do with that racking up tackles for loss and sacks on a routine basis. In the preview I wondered how legit the rushing defense ranking was for UL. As it turns out it was indeed accurate. Also the Tar Heel offensive line simply did not go a good job protecting Renner or opening up holes for Bernard. In fact, Renner got mauled on two plays before he could even think about throwing it away due in part to a missed blocking assignment. The offense simply was not good hence the lack of points. I expected a much bigger offensive day and what we saw instead was offenses of Tar Heel past under the likes of John Bunting. Were it not for the play of Bernard in the second half along with Erik Highsmith and Dwight Jones this game might still be going on tied 0-0.
The real question is how much should any of us read into this one game. The expectation was UNC would smack UL around with extreme prejudice. When a half passed and UNC had allowed UL to own the time of possession, those expectations died a quick death. Was this simply playing down to a bad team for a Tar Heel squad that is clearly a little better? I am leaning that way but only because the offense has been better because of the present talent level. I expect the defense to wet the bed on a regular basis. The offense has been capable which leads me to believe this game was like those games in basketball where the opponent matches up well despite being less talented on paper. At 5-1, this is no time to panic and certainly not a time to think the season is lost.
It was a frustrating win but still a win so take it and move on.