Tar Heels Preparing For Unique Offense
By Emily Fedewa, GoHeels.com
Last year, an extra week to prepare for Georgia Tech's triple-option offense wasn't enough for the Carolina football team to stop a tough loss to the Yellow Jackets.
This year, the Tar Heels will get another shot.
Once again, UNC has a bye week placed before its clash with Georgia Tech, and head coach Larry Fedora and the Tar Heels are looking for a better result this time around.
"We've definitely changed things up (from last year)," Fedora said of taking a different approach to this bye week. "Any coach will tell you, if you get more opportunities to practice for (Georgia Tech), you like to."
While Fedora said he's not as sure about an offensive game plan just yet with only one game worth of film from this year's Yellow Jackets to work off of, the defense knows what to expect and has already started to get ready.
Senior defensive tackle Tim Jackson and senior safety Tre Boston are looking for redemption against a Georgia Tech offense that Boston said embarrassed them in 2012.
The Carolina defense gave up 68 points and 588 yards of total offense to the Yellow Jackets last season.
"Last year was an eye-opener," Boston said. "Nobody likes to be embarrassed. When you lose a fight, you come back prepared for the fight again, and you prepare even harder."
Fedora and the defense know that preparation is going to be key in the match-up with the Yellow Jackets.
Boston said that one missed assignment could be a touchdown for the explosive Georgia Tech offense. An offense that converted all but four of its possessions into points against UNC a year ago.
But Jackson knows the preparation can be difficult for a unique style like Georgia Tech's.
"You can't play how you usually play against normal teams," Jackson said. "You really have to put everything you've learned in the back of your head and focus on a new technique, just for this team.
"And then once the game's over, you have to throw all that stuff away."
Jackson and Boston both know, though, that an extra week is a perfect opportunity to learn that new scheme and one that this team needs to take advantage of.
There are plenty of differences between the team of 2012 and that of 2013, but a bye week before the Tar Heels face a GT offense they've rarely had an answer for remains the same.
Despite that, Fedora wants the result of this bye week to be completely unlike last season's.
"We're treating this open week a lot different," Fedora said. "Last year didn't work out for us. Hopefully this year will."