Everyone knows that North Carolina is a basketball powerhouse, just look at the banners that hang in the Dean Smith Center. Everyone remembers where they watched as the minutes ticked down and vengeance was earned against Gonzaga in 2017. But lately, Tar Heels fans haven’t had much to cheer for regarding the football program.
The Larry Fedora experiment started off strong, as he went 8-4 in his first season paired with four straight bowl appearances from 2013-2016. However, the past two seasons were dismal with a combined five wins. A 1-7 conference record last season left many empty seats, so many that the University cut 12,000 seats out of Kenan Memorial Stadium for 2019 and beyond.
Rest assured, there is sunshine in the forecast as this storm passes. Hope came in the form of an old coach who led the team to glory in the late 1980s and majority of the 1990s: Mack Brown. Just hearing the name alone sends some Tar Heel fans rejoicing at the sweet memories.
Six straight bowl appearances from 1992-1997 proved that Brown could win. He could recruit, too, and stars like Julius Peppers, who was recruited by Brown but played under Carl Torbush and John Bunting, made UNC a force to be reckoned with in the ACC.
The one glaring question I have for Brown and the football program is can there be a reassertion of dominance? Will Brown still be “Coach February” by making the program attractive to recruits?