Porous prevent D breaks against Virginia

There isn't much that can stir up more groans and grumblings from fans than the switch to the prevent defense by their favorite team in the closing minutes of a close football game. A team's once-stout defense can appear to transform into a completion-allowing machine and most people wonder why the opposing offense can pile up so much yardage so effortlessly with the game hanging in the balance.



Football

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Hakeem Nicks drops a fumble late in the third quarter of UNC?s matchup with Virginia on Saturday. The Tar Heels committed three turnovers in the game" bringing them to minus five in their two losses. ?The turnover battle? Cameron Sexton said ?today that?s why we lost.?

Fumbled Away

CHARLOTTESVILLE Va. — Just inches away. With Virginia down one point and needing an extra point to complete an astonishing late-game comeback against No. 18 North Carolina Deunta Williams gave a superhuman leap and got one hand on the ball.


Hakeem Nicks junior wideout will have to shoulder an even heavier offensive load this weekend against Virgina. ?He?s been the one really solid consistent week-in and week-out player? coach Butch Davis said. ?You can always count on Hakeem to deliver this kind of performance.?

All eyes on Hakeem

Hakeem Nicks barely makes it out of the locker room Tuesday before a camera's in his face and he's being directed for a photo shoot. Nicks takes it all in stride — the light the flashes from the camera; he even manages to ask when and where the shots are running without breaking the photographer's rhythm. It's obvious the junior wideout welcomes the spotlight — which is good because it's going to be focused intensely on him for the rest of the season.


Brandon Tate leaves the press conference at which he announced that he will miss the rest of the season.A senior" Tate holds the all-time NCAA record for kick return yards.Tate tallied 3523 yards with the Tar Heels.

Injury ends Tate's UNC career

Brandon Tate thought his knee might have been bruised. After taking a hit to his knee in the first quarter of Saturday's Notre Dame game" Tate went down hard and limped off the field. ""I thought it was just a bruise or something"" he said at a press conference Monday.


UNC?s E.J. Wilson (92) and Mark Paschal (41) work on a takedown of Notre Dame QB Jimmy Clausen" who was sacked four times on the day.

North Carolina defense steps up big - again

Jimmy Clausen had no chance. On first and 10 from the North Carolina 46 Notre Dame's quarterback couldn't even look downfield before defensive tackle Aleric Mullins was in his face. Clausen cocked his arm to fire but Mullins bulled his way to the ball. Two seconds later the ball was underneath big No. 97 for a turnover.


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Lucky breaks

North Carolina thought it had secured a last-second win. The then-No. 22 Tar Heels stormed the field in celebration.


Two of a kind

A little after 3:30 p.m. Saturday a guy named Tate will jog out toward the end zone and wait for the opening kickoff. If it's sent his way he has the instincts and explosiveness to wind up in the other end zone before the play is over.


Lowell Dyer started his first game this year at center. But he really wants to know which of his roommates is taping ?The Hills? at home.

Lowell Dyer is a PC - at least for now

Center Lowell Dyer started his first game of the year in UNC's 38-12 victory against Connecticut on Oct. 4. Dyer chatted with Assistant Sports Editor Daniel Price on Tuesday afternoon about The Hills BBQ and marine life — sort of.


Kendric Burney and the Tar Heels? improved pass defense lead the nation with 12 interceptions. They recorded just 11 all of last season.

Heels lead nation in picks

A quick look at a college football statistics page during breakfast might shock some unsuspecting eaters enough to cough up their Lucky Charms. Here's a quick recap of what went through those people's minds. ""Let's see" who's leading the country in team interceptions? Wait" North Carolina's No. 1? Really?"" Believe it.


Two explosive offenses could light up Kenan

Game and Time: Notre Dame at North Carolina. Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m. Saturday. - Site: Kenan Stadium. - TV/Radio: TV coverage will be on ABC. Radio coverage will be provided by WCHL 1360 AM WRDU 106.1 FM. - Records: Notre Dame and North Carolina are both 4-1.


Sophomore Shaun Draughn switched from safety to running back before training camp and has revitalized North Carolina?s ground game.

Draughn shows worth in back_¶ eld

Before the start of training camp Shaun Draughn had something to prove. He was a sophomore safety buried on the depth chart and it looked like he was headed for another year of thankless special teams play. Until he marched into head coach Butch Davis' office — high school highlight reel in hand — and asked to play running back.


Davis living up to expectations

Credit Cameron Sexton with saving the Butch Davis bubble. Before last Saturday quarterback T.J. Yates' absence hung over North Carolina's season like a plague. With the starter out from a foot fracture for most of the season the Tar Heels' 2-1 record at the time looked like the farthest beyond .500 UNC might get this year.


Jordan Hemby and the secondary will face their toughest test yet against Notre Dame?s talented passing offense including standout Golden Tate.

Heels must stop ND's skilled receiving corps

Most of the press for North Carolina's Saturday matchup with Notre Dame has gone to quarterback Jimmy Clausen's golden arm but the real precious metal of Notre Dame's offense just might be wideout Golden Tate. Tate is the most electrifying of Notre Dame's receivers and he leads the team with 23 receptions and also has three touchdown grabs.