With the calendar firmly turned to September, Tar Heel fall sports are in full swing. This weekend will not disappoint the avid Carolina fan with a slate of events on tap. Here is a look:
The Tar Heels step out of the fire of their opener at top 10 ranked South Carolina and return to the friendly confines of Kenan Stadium. They will host Middle Tennessee State who enter the game 1-0.
Despite the loss to the Gamecocks, Carolina comes into the game with some positives. Starting with Bryn Renner who has continued his stellar play. Carolina showed that despite the loss of Gio Bernard, they can still run the football behind A.J. Blue and Romar Morris. Offensively, they should be able to score points against the Blue Raiders.
Defensively, the Gamecocks roughed up the Tar Heel defensive line, particularly early. They were not helped by the secondary, as well, who did not do well in coverage early.
Middle Tennessee returns quarterback Logan Kilgore off of a team who upset Georgia Tech last season and has some offensive weapons. On the defensive side, there are plenty of holes in an already suspect defense which bodes well for North Carolina. The two teams have never played each other.
Game Time: Saturday, September 7, 12:30 pm, Kenan Stadium
Carolina will be in action in the Carpet Capital Collegiate from Rocky Face, Georgia. They will be competing against teams such as South Carolina, Clemson, Tennessee, Georgia Tech, Texas, Auburn, Wake Forest and Georgia among several others.
The tournament is the first of the year for the Men's team. The event starts Friday and finishes on Sunday.
UNC will spend the weekend in Athens, Ohio participating in the Bobcat Invitational. They will face Dayton and Ohio on Friday and see Cincinnati on Saturday. After going 4-0 on the season last weekend, Carolina cracked the top 25 rankings at 24.
The top ranked Tar Heels will have a couple of games over the weekend at the Duke Nike Classic. They will face UCLA at 8:00 p.m. Friday and West Virginia Sunday at 11:00 a.m.
The matchup against the Bruins will be a high profile contest as UCLA enters the game 3rd ranked in the nation. Both teams are 4-0 on the season.
West Virginia is the 19th ranked team in the country in the most recent rankings.
Another Tar Heel team who tops the national rankings comes by way of their Field Hockey team. After a successful weekend last week where they defeated Lock Haven and Villanova from the northeast, they hit the road again to Iowa. They face Michigan on Saturday and Iowa on Sunday from Iowa City, Ia. It is part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. The games continue an early season stretch where the first 6 out of 8 games are away from Chapel Hill.
Michigan comes into the game unranked while Iowa opened the season at 13th in the nation.
The third top ranked team in the Country during fall sports are the Men's Soccer squad. The Heels have yet to yield a goal after their games against Monmouth and Coastal Carolina last weekend. They hit the road to South Bend, Indiana to face Notre Dame on Saturday.
It is a big early season clash for both teams with the Fighting Irish entering the game 4th in the nation. Carolina is 2-0 on the young season while Notre Dame defeated SMU and tied 6th ranked UCLA last weekend.
The game will be featured on ESPNU
Game Time: Sunday, September 8, 12 noon from South Bend, Indiana