It appeared that the football game was all but over against Louisville on Saturday. The Cardinals looked like a ranked team rolling up a 36-7 halftime lead while Carolina looked lost. Some teams lay down facing that type of deficit but Larry Fedora's Tar Heels refused.
It was North Carolina scoring 28 points to Louisville's 3 in the second half. They made a frantic comeback that was one completion short of possibly one of the greatest Tar Heel football comebacks ever.
After North Carolina scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter to cut the Cards lead to 39-34, a Bryn Renner pass to Erik Highsmith was deflected incomplete in the end zone with 1:53 left in the game. Andrew Johnson was able to get his hand on the 4th down play to jar the ball away from Highsmith, ending the final threat by UNC.
North Carolina has been inconsistent in the first three games under Fedora as they attempt to iron out the new offense but the fact that the Tar Heels did not mail it in after the huge deficit, is encouraging.
After a dismal first half, Fedora challenged his team to play with more intensity and character. “He challenged all of us...How hard are we going to play, and what kind of character do we have as a team.” Bryn Renner said after the game.
As bad as their first half was, Fedora stated after the game that he was proud that the Tar Heels fought back after what he labeled as a "God-awful" first half.
This team is a work in progress, with coaching changes and an overhaul in style of play. They have shown glimpses that they can be a good football team. They will look to bounce back and even their record up on Saturday hosting East Carolina.
The status of running back Gio Bernard, who has missed the last two games to injury, is uncertain. As evidenced in the Elon game, his presence is huge going forward.