Senior wide receiver Beau Corrales shared this sentiment.
“Just having two weeks off, it feels like we’ve had a little mini-offseason," he said.
In such an unusual season where — as UNC already found out — games can be canceled abruptly, the NCAA granted an extra year of eligibility to all fall athletes. But Fox and Corrales, both seniors, said they are focused on the season ahead despite the opportunity they have to return to the team next year.
Fox said he doesn’t want to use the extra year of eligibility as a crutch.
“I’m trying to play this year like it’s my last,” he said.
Corrales mirrored Fox's beliefs, saying he hadn’t even thought about the extra year of eligibility.
“My focus is on trying to win games through 2020,” Corrales said. “Whatever happens — I’ll cross that bridge whenever I get there.”
The Tar Heels said they have gotten used to new COVID-19 protocols during the time away from games.
Junior offensive lineman Brian Anderson has taken a leadership role in making sure the players don’t break the bubble they've tried to create and noted following protocols even gave opportunities for the team to be together and build chemistry.
“These are very tough times, and you don’t (want to be) locked in your room totally isolated,” Anderson said. “And as long as you’re following protocol, it’s nice to hang out together, and that’s something we can do to maintain our bubble but also a little social interaction.”
Regardless of how COVID-19 has affected team travel, Corrales said its seniors are advising the younger players to soak it in, as there are only so many opportunities to bond with the team on the road.
As for Boston College, the players note that they’re a well-coached, technically sound team that plays with a chip on its shoulder.
Corrales said UNC will employ a quick-hit offensive system to combat the Eagles' physicality.
"A game plan that will allow us to play instinctively and fast," he said.
Corrales also said Brown has created an environment where practice feels like gameday in the wake of two consecutive bye weeks.
“You come out there with the competition mindset,” he said. “It brings out the best in everybody, so it’s been fun."
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