The season didn’t get any easier for the Tar Heels as they traveled to Atlanta for a date with the triple option. Although the defense did their best to control the Yellow Jackets, UNC’s offense was just not able to hold up their end of the bargain.
Some of the problem was ineffectiveness on the part of quarterback Chazz Surratt. His reads were fairly poor all game, missing open receivers and staring down intended targets too often. Larry Fedora briefly replaced Surratt with Brandon Harris who promptly tossed an interception of his own. Surratt returned and finished the game 18/30 for just 141 yards.
Running back Jordon Brown led the way with the team’s lone touchdown of the game in addition to 57 receiving yards and 41 rushing yards. Jordan Cunningham had two receptions for 40 yards, but he was the only player other than Brown to exceed 20 yards on the ground or through the air for the Tar Heels.
Injuries have been an obvious issue for the team, and it feels like they just continue to pile up, but some of the problems against Georgia Tech were self-inflicted. Surratt seems to have gone backwards a bit since the first game of the season, but how much of that is him and how much of that is the deterioration of his weapons is unclear.
Adding to Carolina’s woes, kicker Freeman Jones missed two field goals in the game. The first was a 40-yarder that Jones missed by a mile with an ugly kick. The second was 52-yarder that was closer than the previous miss...but still no good.
Cayson Collins turned in a strong performance defensively, and the defense desperately tried to do their job. Cole Holcomb had an important fumble recovery that was literally thrown away on the very next play by an interception. The problem of giving up big yardage on third down continued for the Heels’ defense, but overall they were not the biggest issue on the day.
UNC drops to 1-4 on the year and 0-3 in the ACC. It’s hard to find too many wins left on the schedule with the team playing the way they currently are, unfortunately. The Heels host Notre Dame at Kenan Stadium next Saturday afternoon.