Current Date: Sat, 08 Mar 2014 14:59:38 -0500
With his arms crossed low across his body, wrists resting by his side, senior safety Tre Boston appeared to be wearing a bracelet that read “me = Me.”
It seemed appropriate — Boston was in the midst of telling reporters that the key to thwarting Georgia Tech’s triple option offense next week was for everyone to hold themselves accountable and to focus on their individual assignments.
But after he was asked about it, Boston stretched out his arms and showed that the bracelet read “Awesome = Me,” and as he unfolded his arms, two other bands shimmied down, spinning until they came to a rest at his wrists.
One read “I am Second,” and the other read “I am awesome” — testaments to his unshakable self-confidence.
“You’ve got to have confidence in yourself. If you don’t believe you’re the best at what you do, nobody else is going to believe it,” Boston said.
“And I believe I’m one of the best at what I do, and the guys, they definitely believe that I have that confidence in myself.”
And in this bye week, Boston is not only working on instilling that same confidence in his teammate, but also on getting the 11-man defensive squad working in sync.
“I try to bring my knowledge to everybody because it only helps if I help everybody else,” Boston said. “If I’m the only person that knows it’s play action — touchdown. I try to get the rest of the guys to get on my same page so it can only make us better as a team.”
That communication and confidence will be crucial as the Tar Heels prepare to take on a Georgia Tech team that put 68 points on the board last season in Kenan Stadium en route to UNC’s 68-50 Homecoming loss — a drubbing that’s still on Boston’s mind.
“This is one of those games that you’re always reminded of,” Boston said. “And you want to keep that reminder in your head. You never want a team to score 68 points, and that’s embarrassing. And this year, I kept it in my head to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
“I was embarrassed, I was embarrassed for our defense and to come out here again and solidify ourselves as a defense, I definitely want to make sure that we come out here and show what we have.”
Last season, defensive coordinator Vic Koenning also had a bye week to prepare for the Yellow Jackets, but his defense was still rendered ineffective against Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson’s puzzling offense.
Koenning knows that the schemes will continue to be intricate, but they’re also the same ones that Johnson runs year after year.
“We can go back six, eight years with (Johnson), they’ve really only changed a couple of things,” he said. “They’ve got a lot of offense and he’s the guru king daddy of it.”
There’s a little more than a week separating UNC from its chance to rectify the loss to the Yellow Jackets, and Boston is prepared to lead the defense in its charge.
“What they did to me last year and what they did to this defense, I want to make sure that we come out here and show them what we have and that we prepared for this game and that we want to play this game,” Boston said.
“It’s going to be different than last year.”