TONIGHT– North Carolina at Virginia

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Nov 14, 2012


Week 12 Fearless Prediction – North Carolina at Virginia

North Carolina (6-4) at Virginia (4-6) Nov. 15, 7:30, ESPN

Here’s The Deal: In the mixed-up, cockeyed world of the Coastal Division, 4-6 Virginia might be its hottest team.

The Cavaliers, with absolutely no warning, have set aside a six-game losing streak to impressively win back-to-back games over NC State and Miami. On Saturday, they rallied from a 10-point, fourth-quarter deficit to squeak by the ‘Canes on a touchdown pass with six seconds left. Virginia has been boxed out of the division, but it’ll play this weekend with bowl eligibility still in play, which didn’t seem possible back in October.

North Carolina got swarmed by Georgia Tech last Saturday, losing 68-50 in a shootout that featured more points than any other game involving two ACC teams. An extra week to prepare for the triple-option did little to help the Heels, who allowed seven rushing touchdowns. Ineligible for the postseason, rookie head coach Larry Fedora will use the final two games to position his program for 2013 and beyond.

Why North Carolina Might Win: As the season wears on, Fedora’s balanced attack looks better and better in Chapel Hill.

The Tar Heels rank a synchronous 29th nationally in rushing and passing, a worry for a Cavaliers D that just got done yielding four touchdown passes and 233 rushing yards to Miami. Carolina will pepper the youthful unit with a blend of Bryn Renner’s throws and the multi-dimensional exploits of RB Giovani Bernard. It stands No. 10 in the country at 40 points per game, bolstered by G Jonathan Cooper, T James Hurst and arguably the best O-line in the ACC. The Virginia pass rush has perked up just once all season, which means Renner will have the time he needs to find one of his many athletic receivers.

Why Virginia Might Win: North Carolina is demoralized on defense, and not just because of the 68 points Georgia Tech tagged it for last week.

Virginia doesn’t run the triple-option, but then again, neither does Virginia Tech, Duke or NC State, who each hung up at least 33 points on the Heels since the beginning of October. While the program has talent on that side of the ball, it’s wearing down from the grind of a full season. Enter a resurgent Michael Rocco, who has thrown six touchdown passes without a pick over the last two games. He’ll go toe-to-toe with Renner, while also feeding powerful RB Kevin Parks. Like the Cavaliers, the Tar Heels have been quiet with the pass rush, and likely to hit walls in tackles Oday Aboushi and Morgan Moses.

What To Watch Out For: Which of the suspect defensive backfields is going to step up in Charlottesville? Virginia is going with youth, using four starting sophomores, while liberally inserting true freshman CB Maurice Canady. North Carolina has a little more seasoning, but it’s undetectable when DE Kareem Martin and DT Sylvester Williams aren’t getting into the backfield. This could become a duel between the quarterbacks, with the DBs going under the microscope.

What Will Happen: The ACC has staged an awful lot of exciting, high-scoring affairs this fall. This Thursday night’s showdown in Charlottesville will be the newest chapter of the 2012 zaniness.

Carolina and Virginia will duke it out for all four quarters, trading offensive blows in a free-wheeling shootout. The Tar Heels, with just a little more talent and inventiveness within the attack, will treat a nationally-televised event as its bowl game, outlasting the Cavaliers to end their postseason hopes. Renner and Rocco will throw for 600 combined yards, but two picks from the latter will hinder UVa’s comeback bid.

CFN Prediction: North Carolina 35 … Virginia 30
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) North Carolina -3.5 O/U: 74.5
Must Watch Rating (5 – Killing Them Softly, 1 – The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2): 2.5
North Carolina (6-4) at Virginia (4-6) Nov. 15, 7:30, ESPN

Here’s The Deal: In the mixed-up, cockeyed world of the Coastal Division, 4-6 Virginia might be its hottest team.

The Cavaliers, with absolutely no warning, have set aside a six-game losing streak to impressively win back-to-back games over NC State and Miami. On Saturday, they rallied from a 10-point, fourth-quarter deficit to squeak by the ‘Canes on a touchdown pass with six seconds left. Virginia has been boxed out of the division, but it’ll play this weekend with bowl eligibility still in play, which didn’t seem possible back in October.

North Carolina got swarmed by Georgia Tech last Saturday, losing 68-50 in a shootout that featured more points than any other game involving two ACC teams. An extra week to prepare for the triple-option did little to help the Heels, who allowed seven rushing touchdowns. Ineligible for the postseason, rookie head coach Larry Fedora will use the final two games to position his program for 2013 and beyond.

Why North Carolina Might Win: As the season wears on, Fedora’s balanced attack looks better and better in Chapel Hill.

The Tar Heels rank a synchronous 29th nationally in rushing and passing, a worry for a Cavaliers D that just got done yielding four touchdown passes and 233 rushing yards to Miami. Carolina will pepper the youthful unit with a blend of Bryn Renner’s throws and the multi-dimensional exploits of RB Giovani Bernard. It stands No. 10 in the country at 40 points per game, bolstered by G Jonathan Cooper, T James Hurst and arguably the best O-line in the ACC. The Virginia pass rush has perked up just once all season, which means Renner will have the time he needs to find one of his many athletic receivers.

Why Virginia Might Win: North Carolina is demoralized on defense, and not just because of the 68 points Georgia Tech tagged it for last week.

Virginia doesn’t run the triple-option, but then again, neither does Virginia Tech, Duke or NC State, who each hung up at least 33 points on the Heels since the beginning of October. While the program has talent on that side of the ball, it’s wearing down from the grind of a full season. Enter a resurgent Michael Rocco, who has thrown six touchdown passes without a pick over the last two games. He’ll go toe-to-toe with Renner, while also feeding powerful RB Kevin Parks. Like the Cavaliers, the Tar Heels have been quiet with the pass rush, and likely to hit walls in tackles Oday Aboushi and Morgan Moses.

What To Watch Out For: Which of the suspect defensive backfields is going to step up in Charlottesville? Virginia is going with youth, using four starting sophomores, while liberally inserting true freshman CB Maurice Canady. North Carolina has a little more seasoning, but it’s undetectable when DE Kareem Martin and DT Sylvester Williams aren’t getting into the backfield. This could become a duel between the quarterbacks, with the DBs going under the microscope.

What Will Happen: The ACC has staged an awful lot of exciting, high-scoring affairs this fall. This Thursday night’s showdown in Charlottesville will be the newest chapter of the 2012 zaniness.

Carolina and Virginia will duke it out for all four quarters, trading offensive blows in a free-wheeling shootout. The Tar Heels, with just a little more talent and inventiveness within the attack, will treat a nationally-televised event as its bowl game, outlasting the Cavaliers to end their postseason hopes. Renner and Rocco will throw for 600 combined yards, but two picks from the latter will hinder UVa’s comeback bid.

CFN Prediction: North Carolina 35 … Virginia 30
ATS Consultants Line (Click for more lines and picks) North Carolina -3.5 O/U: 74.5
Must Watch Rating (5 – Killing Them Softly, 1 – The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2): 2.5