I'm not sure how to respond to what I saw today; I had several scenarios in mind prior to the start of the game--most of them bad, naturally--and I have to wonder about the number of beers that would've been necessary to envision a shutout. It's just the latest strange chapter in this series during the TOB era, where everything seems to go NC State's way no matter the circumstances.
Not that I thought we were doomed for sure today, but I thought the Heels clearly had the better football team. I guess that's not so different from the last two years. And we did it again. NC State's defense limited UNC to 32 total yards in the first half and Carolina had a long touchdown called back due to a holding penalty. David Amerson picked off another pass and James Washington ran for over 100 yards. North Carolina finished the game with as many interceptions as rushing yards.
For the game, UNC was held to less than 170 total yards and didn't even crack a 3.0 per-play average. Yeah, that... I don't even know how to respond to that. The defense did a fantastic job today, to say the least. They were the calming influence throughout all of our inevitable angsty moments of doubt. It felt like we'd squandered possession after possession near midfield in the first half, but eventually the worry began to erode as State's defense took control of the game.They took advantage of miscues, enjoyed a little good fortune, and hounded Carolina's quarterbacks. That's a good recipe for success.
And thank goodness for that performance because the offense had no interest in applying a middle finger in the form of points. Alas. There's always next time.