Carolina Faces No. 10 Miami On Zero Dark Thursday
CHAPEL HILL --- Carolina will play host to nationally-ranked and unbeaten Miami on Thursday, Oct. 17 at 7:45 p.m. It is just the second ESPN Thursday night home game in UNC history and the first since 2009 vs. Florida State.
This is the second Thursday night game of the season for the Tar Heels who opened the year with a 27-10 loss at South Carolina on Thursday, Aug. 29. This marks the first time Carolina has played two ESPN Thursday night games in the same season.
The Tar Heels enter the game 1-4 overall and 0-2 in the ACC following a 27-17 loss at Virginia Tech on Oct. 5. Carolina's lone win came at home against Middle Tennessee State on Sept. 7. Miami is 5-0 overall and 1-0 in league play following a 45-30 victory at Georgia Tech on Oct. 5.
AT A GLANCE
Records: North Carolina 1-4 (0-2 ACC), Miami 5-0 (1-0 ACC)
Rankings: Carolina is unranked. Miami is ranked No. 10 in the Associated Press poll and No. 11 in the USA Today Coaches poll.
TV: ESPN. Rece Davis (play-by-play), Jesse Palmer (analyst), David Pollack (analyst) and Samantha Ponder (sideline) have the call. The game is also available via WatchESPN.com and the WatchESPN app.
Radio: Tar Heel Sports Network, a division of Learfield Communications. Jones Angell (play-by-play), Ethan Albright (analyst) and Lee Pace (sideline) have the call. A link to the live stream can be found at GoHeels.com.
On The Web: GoHeels.com • Twitter: @TarHeelFootball, @CoachFedora
CAROLINA TO WEAR ALL-BLACK UNIFORMS
Carolina will wear all-black uniforms against Miami in a game billed as "Zero Dark Thursday."
The all-black uniform is the first installment of the "Tar Pit Series," which will feature an alternate uniform or helmet for one game each year. This year's alternate uniform color has been taken from the black tar in the Tar Heel logo.
"We wanted to design a uniform that connected our team to The Tar Pit, our name for the student section," said head coach Larry Fedora. "Make no mistake, Carolina Blue and white will always be our traditional colors. It made sense to have a black-out game this year after the success of last season's white-out game vs. Virginia Tech (a 48-34 UNC victory).
"We showed the uniforms to our kids before the Spring Game and they are fired up to wear them on Thursday night on a national stage on ESPN."
TAR HEEL DOWNTOWN ACTIVITIES PLANNED
Downtown Chapel Hill will be buzzing with activity before Thursday night's kickoff vs. Miami. "Tar Heel Downtown," a family-friendly event, will take place from 4 to 7 p.m. on Franklin Street.
Before most football games, Tar Heel Town takes place on the campus next to Kenan Football Stadium. But with such a unique opportunity to highlight our University and downtown to the world, the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership, UNC Athletics and the Town of Chapel Hill have partnered to host the event on West Franklin Street from Columbia to Mallette streets, centered at the 140 West Plaza.
At the downtown event, there will be live broadcasting of the Countdown to Kickoff Radio Show on Franklin Street. A stage will feature performances from the band Liquid Pleasure, Carolina Cheerleaders, and the Marching Tar Heels - with a special appearance by Rameses. Family-friendly activities will include bounce houses and face painting. Carolina giveaways will be provided from the Rams Club and Carolina Athletics.
An economic impact study from 2008 estimated the total economic impact of a home football game day on the Chapel Hill and Orange County economy at about $6.3 million. (Study at downtownchapelhill.com/studies)
MIAMI SERIES NOTES
• Carolina and Miami are meeting for the 17th time overall and the 10th consecutive season.
• Carolina has won four of the last six meetings with Miami. UNC's four most recent wins in the series have been decided by 10 points or less, including a 33-27 victory in 2007, a 28-24 win in 2008, a 33-24 win in 2009 and an 18-14 win in 2012. The 2008 and 2009 wins were vacated.
• Carolina's first game against Miami as ACC members came in 2004 and was a memorable win for the Tar Heels. Connor Barth connected on a 42-yard field goal as time expired to beat the fourth-ranked Hurricanes, 31-28. It is still the highest-ranked team Carolina has ever beaten and is the Tar Heels' only win over a team ranked in the Associated Press top five.
• The first meeting between the two institutions came in 1946, when Carl Snavely's Tar Heels knocked off Miami, 21-0, in the second game of the year. Carolina would go on to finish 8-2-1 and play Georgia in the Sugar Bowl. It was one of only two losses that season for the Hurricanes.
• Carolina's most recent win over a ranked team was a 37-35 victory at No. 24 Florida State in 2010. The Tar Heels' last win over a top 10 team was a 31-28 victory over No. 4 Miami in 2004.
• WR Quinshad Davis had just eight catches for 93 yards in the first three games. In the last two games against ECU and Virginia Tech, he has 11 catches for 205 yards. Davis also threw a 32-yard touchdown pass to T.J. Thorpe against the Pirates.
• QB Bryn Renner is scheduled to make his 30th career start Thursday vs. Miami. He will become of four Tar Heels with 30 or more starts. OT James Hurst leads the way with 41 career starts, followed by Kareem Martin (33) and Tre Boston (32). Renner's streak of 29 consecutive starts was derailed last week by a foot injury at Virginia Tech.
• Renner ranks third in the ACC and 20th in the country, averaging 279.3 yards passing per game. He is first in the league in completions per game at 22.8.
• Renner has seven touchdown passes this year and is in second place on the all-time UNC career chart with 61. Darian Durant, now a Canadian Football League star, is the career leader with 68.
• Former walk-on linebacker Jeff Schoettmer has started every game this season and leads the team with 44 tackles, including a career-high 13 stops against Virginia Tech.
• Junior bandit Norkeithus Otis entered 2013 with just seven career tackles. This season, he has 24 tackles, and leads the team in sacks (3.5).
• Tight end Eric Ebron leads the team with 23 receptions for 333 yards. Against Georgia Tech, Ebron posted a career-high 106 yards receiving on six catches. The last time a tight end led the team in receptions was Mike Chatham with 20 in 1980.
• Ebron is third nationally among tight ends with 66.6 yards receiving per game.
• After allowing 277 yards on 35 plays in the first half at Virginia Tech, the Carolina defense allowed just 64 yards on 27 plays after the break. The Hokies gained just 13 yards on nine plays in the third quarter.
• TB T.J. Logan made his Carolina debut in Blacksburg and rushed five times for 25 yards. He also caught one pass for eight yards and returned a kickoff 21 yards on his first career touch.
• Carolina ranks second in the conference with a 23.6 kickoff return average.
• Carolina has played the 8th-most difficult schedule to date according to Jeff Sagarin's rankings in USA Today.