Photo courtesy of Florida State athletics
In a game that has become a pseudo-rivalry of late, North Carolina will visit Doak Campbell Stadium for a prime time showdown with Florida State on Saturday night.
In order to get an idea of what to expect, FQ FSU sat down with FQ North Carolina to get some information on the upcoming game.
WHO SHOULD FSU BE LOOKING OUT FOR ON OFFENSE AND DEFENSE?
FQ North Carolina: On offense, the Tar Heels have playmakers everywhere, so it’s really pick your poison. North Carolina has arguably the best running back duo in the country with Michael Carter and Javonte Williams. Out wide, it may have one of the best wide receiving corps with Dazz Newsome, Dyami Brown and Beau Corrales. Then, it has former FSU commit and one of the best quarterbacks in the country in Sam Howell.
On defense, players to look out for are inside linebackers Chazz Surratt and Jeremiah Gemmel. These two are big playmakers and are key in stopping drives and getting tackles for loss. With defensive back Storm Duck most likely out again, Kyler McMichael, Trey Morrison and Don Chapman are coming off of good games and should step up in the secondary.
MANY FSU FANS THINK THE NOLES HAVE A GOOD CHANCE TO WIN THIS GAME. HOW ARE UNC FANS FEELING?
FQ North Carolina: UNC fans are confident after beating a Virginia Tech team that has always been a thorn in their sides, especially with how well the offense played. Add to that the fact that FSU hasn’t beaten the Heels since 2009 — albeit they’ve only played two games since. The defense should be improved as well.
UNC IS COMING OFF OF A SHOOTOUT. HOW DO YOU THINK THE DEFENSE RESPONDS AFTER GIVING UP 45 POINTS AND NEARLY 500 YARDS IN A GAME?
FQ North Carolina: I believe the defense will play a lot better, but that is dependent on if edge defender Ray Vohasek is able to return. Without Vohasek last week, the scheme North Carolina used left a lot of open lanes for Virginia Tech to exploit in the run game. Vohasek is a huge part of the Tar Heels’ front seven and his presence frees up the rest of the defensive line to make big plays.
WHAT DOES FSU NEED TO DO IN ORDER TO WIN THIS GAME?
FQ North Carolina: In order for FSU to upset the Heels, it will need to stop the run game and contain the deep ball. The longer you can keep the Heels on the field on offense, the more it seems that they will stop themselves. Whether it be dropped balls or an untimely penalty, self-inflicted wounds have been drive killers for North Carolina.
WHAT IS YOUR SCORE PREDICTION AND WHY?
FQ North Carolina: I don’t think we’ll see the 37-35 game we’ve seen the last two games. I believe North Carolina wins this game, 38-17.
For starters, the Tar Heel offense is firing on all cylinders with the offensive line back and fully healthy now. I don’t think FSU has enough on defense to stop this offense. Defensively, coordinator Jay Bateman will bring a lot of pressure to throw off Jordan Travis. With the loss of Tamorrion Terry, I do not know where the plays come from.