Heading into the season, North Carolina’s schedule looked a lot tougher than it did in 2015. All but one opponent won their Week One game. This week didn’t go quite the same. Let’s look at how UNC’s upcoming opponents performed in week two.
Carolina's next opponent may by an FCS team, but they're not going to be a pushover. After dropping 80 points in week one, James Madison continued to pile up the points, beating Central Connecticut 56-21. Through two games, they’re averaging over 400 yards per game on the ground, so that will be something to look out for. North Carolina still should be solid favorites in this one, and we should expect a win, but it could still get interesting if they’re not careful.
As UNC's ACC opener opponent, Pitt moved to 2-0 with a 42-39 win over Penn State. The Panthers picked up 341 rushing yards against Penn State's defense. That was already a tough game on Carolina's schedule, and it's only starting to look more difficult.
The next marquee game on Carolina's schedule is Florida State, who improved to 2-0 on the weekend. Their win over Charleston Southern didn't tell us much about them, but their game this week against Louisville will.
In the first quarter of their loss against Tennessee, Virginia Tech looked decent. However, they then gave up 45 points in the last three quarters. A lot can change between now and when they play the Tar Heels, but this looks like a game Carolina will be definite favorites in.
Miami and Georgia Tech
Miami and Georgia Tech both moved to 2-0 against less than stellar competition.
Duke and NC State
Meanwhile in slightly funnier news, both of UNC's in-state rivals lost their second games of the season. Duke somehow gave up 24 points and 289 yards to Wake Forest. The same Demon Deacons that scored nine points against Tulane.
Then there's NC State. UNC are no strangers to losing to East Carolina, but this time it was State's turn. ECU picked up a 33-30 win against NC State, scoring the go-ahead touchdown with five minutes left.
Virginia also lost, dropping one to Oregon, but that wasn’t a surprise.
UNC's other FCS opponent The Citadel also won, but that won't do much for Carolina's resume either way. This game seems to be a much easier game on paper than the JMU one.
As for past opponents, Georgia won, but it didn't do much to make Carolina's loss to them look any better. Georgia beat FCS Nicholls by just two points. Nick Chubb ran for just 80 yards on 20 carries, because of course he did.
There's still plenty of games left in the season, but this past weekend didn't do a ton of good for UNC's strength of schedule. Although Carolina obviously has to win a bunch more games to make that an issue.