Carolina enters the second half of its 2013 football schedule Saturday with an encounter with Boston College at 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Kenan Stadium. The 1-5 Tar Heels are smarting, the latest sting a 27-23 loss to No. 10 Miami Thursday on Zero Dark Thursday.
The Tar Heels were set to spring a huge upset, leading the Hurricanes 23-20 midway through the final quarter. But on third-and-1 at the 49, however, they were flagged for back-to-back delay of game and false start penalties, forcing them into a punt. Miami turned the ensuing possession into a clock-consuming, 90-yard scoring drive and collected a 27-23 win.
“There are a lot of things about that game that haunt me,” Fedora said Monday, quizzed at his weekly press conference about that odd late-game turn of events.
Immediately after the game, Fedora spoke of the hurt and pain in the locker room.
On Monday, he said the misery had subsided.
“They’re fine now, they’ve put it to bed and moved on,” he said. “You have to. You have to realize that if you can play that way with the No. 10 team in the country, you have some something to build on.”
And Fedora said that hurting that much can have its benefits.
“A lot of people were hurting the other night,” he said. “But that’s not a bad thing when you hurt so bad because you’ve invested so much. That’s a good thing. It means you’re doing things the right way, that you wind up getting your guts ripped out when you lose. But you go right back and do exactly the same things and work hard and if you can invest more, you do that to make things happen.”
The Tar Heels have lost two straight ACC Coastal Division games—by 10 points at Virginia Tech and now four to Miami. They’ve yet to generate a powerful running game, but the insertion of freshman T.J. Logan into the lineup the last two weeks is a step in that direction. And the defense is playing significantly better.
“We’ve made a lot of strides, but unfortunately we’ve not made a big play to win a football game,” Fedora said. “You saw all the upsets Saturday. In every one of them, someone made a big play at a crucial time to win a game—a one-handed grab or three guys draped all over you and you still make a catch. We just haven’t made that play down the stretch. We played hard to the last snap and kept believing we would make that play. Unfortunately, we came up short. We’ve gotten better. I know it’s hard for some people to see, but we have improved.
“We’re going to find a way to win football games. That’s going to happen.”
Boston College is 3-3 overall and 1-2 in the ACC in the first year under coach Steve Addazio.
The game will mark the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1963 Tar Heels who went 9-2, won the Gator Bowl and tied for first in the ACC standings. The team will be recognized during the game.