Football notebook: August 12

North Carolina football coach Larry Fedora is never comfortable, or at least he’ll never admit to it.

The Tar Heels have completed 12 practices and a scrimmage, but Fedora knows being comfortable wont help the Tar Heels beat their week one opponent South Carolina.

“As soon as you feel comfortable, You’re always an ankle (injury) away from ‘Uh-oh, Well now what do we do?,’” Fedora said Monday.

While Fedora thought his team’s first scrimmage on Saturday went well, he saw it as a typical first scrimmage and noticed a lot of mistakes from young players who hadn’t been let loose by the coaches.

In practices, those young players typically have a coach near by to guide them, but in the team’s scrimmage, they did not, and it showed, Fedora said.

“Now you see the little things that become glaring,” Fedora said. “You try to pay attention to the details. If you take care of the details you don’t have to worry about the rest of it.”

With just 17 days until their showdown with South Carolina, the Tar Heels will try to hone in on those details in preparation for the season.

Tabb playing defense

The big story of the day was the roster move of tight end Jack Tabb to defense. While the junior has spent the last two season catching passes, UNC’s staff decided yesterday to move Tabb to linebacker in an attempt to provide depth to the position.

Last year, Tabb played 10 games for the Tar Heels and recorded 12 catches for 144 yards, but this season, the 240-pounder could find himself playing on both sides of the ball.

But he doesn’t mind.

“I’m just in there trying to learn as fast as I can to contribute as much as I can,” Tabb said. “It’s an honor to play both ways in college because I know not a lot of people get to do that.”

At Red Banks Catholic High in New Jersey, Tabb played both offense and defense, and said that his high school defense was similar to the one UNC runs.

Washington moves to safety

Tabb isn’t the only Tar Heel moving to the other side of the ball. Last season, due to depth issues at wide receiver, Damien Washington saw time at wide out where he caught two balls for 16 yards.

But this season he’s taken his talents as an athlete to the safety position because of the Tar Heels increased depth at receiver from the additions of freshmen like Ryan Switzer and Johnathan Howard.

“I know Vic (Koenning’s) happy with where he is in just the few says he’s been back there,” Fedora said.

Freshmen standing out

With a scrimmage under the team’s belt, UNC’s coaches have had an opportunity more thoroughly examine their players, especially the younger ones.

And from what Fedora and offensive coordinator Blake Anderson have seen, a few freshmen are making strong cases for playing time.

Both Fedora and Anderson were quick to name true freshmen T.J. Logan, Ryan Switzer and Howard as standouts with a chance to make a difference for UNC this year.

“All three have made an immediate impact and had a really good camp,” Anderson said. “Especially when you’re talking about (the fact that) they’re barely out of high school.”


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