T. J. Yates showed potential against the Pirates but can't seem to take care of the ball. (Photo by Rob Rowe)
It's been a weird several days since Christian Ponder went all Drew Brees on the Tar Heels.
Grumblings from fans and media have begun permeating through the blogosphere. Most of which point to coach Butch Davis' 16-16 record at Carolina as not worthy of a multimillion-dollar contract.
The frustrations UNC fans feel aren't unrealistic. The defense is there but sometimes is outschemed by opponents. The offense flashes potential but lacks consistency with an interception-prone quarterback.
Halfway through year three, though, Davis should not start 0-3 in conference play, especially with the talent he's brought to Chapel Hill.
To make matters worse, UNC's bowl prospects look bleak. Five games remain on the schedule and UNC must win three to reach the postseason. With UNC traveling to face the Virginia Tech Hokies, who are the fourth straight ACC opponent with a bye week before facing the Tar Heels, it might be time to label this game as a must win.
Not for Davis' career but for the season. Not reaching a bowl game would be seen as a huge step backward, especially with the progress of Duke under the direction of coach David Cutcliffe.
Not to mention all the money thrown at the football program per Davis' request. Seats have not been as full this season and fan enthusiasm is leveling off -- a dangerous line to be tiptoeing.
Links follow below the jump:
- Following the collapse against the Seminoles, UNC lost quite a bit of ground in various power rankings. ESPN's Heather Dinich went as far to say UNC is the worst team in the ACC. I don't entirely agree since UNC's defense should keep them in nearly every game remaining on the schedule.
- The Tar Heels are trying to stay focused on individual games instead of thinking about the big picture of the success this season, according to the Charlotte Observer. This week is crucial, in my opinion, for the outcome of the season. The Heels travel to the hornets' nest that is Blacksburg, Va., and a win could be a huge swing in momentum.
- UNC and N. C. State are embarrassing the Triangle while Duke has been a pleasant surprise in the Atlantic division. 850 the Blog points out the glaring statistic: Duke two ACC victories, UNC and N. C. State none.
- A UNC fan blogger offers this simple evaluation of Davis, reflecting what seems to be the general consensus among Chapel Hillians.
- The N&O looks at both Tom O'Brien and Davis in their third seasons. Apparently, there's quite a pattern of failure.
- Quarterback T.J. Yates took a lot of heat for the loss against the Seminoles and even had something thrown at him as he left the field. InsideCarolina.com takes a look at Yates and the reaction by fans.