Big game for the Tar Heels tonight in Piscataway.
7:50 pm: Okay, the Cover It Live software isn’t cooperating, so we’re doing the live blog the old-fashioned way for now.
7:51 pm: Greg Little ran for 4 yards on 2nd and 10, but the pass on third was incomplete, as Brooks Foster couldn’t stay in bounds.
7:53 pm: Meanwhile, Rutgers has run three pass plays and is already inside the UNC 35.
Deunta Williams went for the run blitz, but went too far outside, and Kordell Young gets a big gain and a first down.
7:54 pm: OOHHHHHHH…Trimane Goddard should have picked the ball off.
7:56 pm: After a penalty, UNC stops a 2nd and 15 run to force 3rd and 12 from the UNC 28.
A receiver was left wide open in the flat, but he’s tackled just short of the first down.
7:57 pm: Rutgers nails the field goal. 3-0, Scarlet Knights five minutes into the game.
7:59 pm: For me, the jury is still out on the Navy pants. Regardless, this is certainly a harbinger of navy jerseys later in the season.
8:01 pm: Tate with another good return to the UNC 33.
8:02 pm: Uh-oh. Anthony Elzy is down.
8:03 pm: Elzy apparently landed on his head. By the looks of it his injury could be serious.
8:06 pm: What a catch by Tate. A very effective rollout play by Yates and the offensive line.
8:07 pm: Even the prospect of a Tate end-around helps give Greg Little a few extra yards.
8:09 pm: A safety blitz stuffs Little at the line of scrimmage to force 4th down. Carolina looks like they’re going to go fo it on 4th and 3.
8:12 pm: Tate drops it! He dropped it! Granted it was a bit behind him, but Brandon absolutely must make that play.
8:13 pm: Rutgers takes the momentum immediately, as Kenny Britt takes the first down pass across midfield.
8:15 pm: I hope Tiquan Underwood is okay. No one wants to see a player get injured. Hopefully, he just had the wind knocked out of him and will be back in this game.
Having said that…WHOOOOOOOOOOOO! I haven’t seen UNC make a decleater like that in years.
8:17 pm: Underwood will be okay. He walks off the field under his own power.
8:18 pm: Teel throws another pass too high, and Rutgers is forced to punt.
8:19 pm: Elzy’s back in the game, and he has to fight to get back to the line of scrimmage.
8:20 pm: Nicks very nearly drops the ball, but he makes the catch to set up 3rd and 2.
Little busts his way up the middle for a first down.
8:21 pm: Has ESPN reminded you of UNC’s drought in games outside of North Carolina?
8:22 pm: Rutgers needs four defenders to bring down Brooks Foster.
8:23 pm: Another first down run up the middle by Little.
8:24 pm: Yates is sacked on 3rd down. Too bad, the drive started with a lot of promise. If nothing else, the Heels ate up a lot of clock on that drive and gave their defense a rest.
8:26 pm: That first quarter went fast. Rutgers leads, 3-0, but no one has taken control of the game as of yet.
8:31pm: E.J. Wilson forces Teel to throw the ball away.
INTERCEPTION! Charles Brown (#12) reads the play and jumps in front of the ball up the middle. What a play.
8:32 pm: Little tries the outside, but he goes nowhere.
Yates scrambles for a decent gain on second down.
8:34 pm: Yates reeeallly overthorws Tate, but UNC is in field goal range.
Wooten hits the field goal right down the middle. The game is tied, 3-3.
8:36 pm: Both Yates and Little have had their moments in this game, but they’ll need to be a little more consistent for the offense to be effective later in the game.
8:37 pm: It’s the birthplce of college football versus the birthplace of the forward pass!
8:39 pm: more big hits by the UNC defense. That’s the physicality they were missing against McNeese State.
8:40 pm: QUANTAVIUS THE MAGNIFICENT stops Underwood short of the first down. Smart defensive position on the part of the Heels.
8:42 pm: UNC will get the ball at the 48 yard line.
Nicks snatches thae catch from the waiting arms of two Rutgers defenders.
8:43 pm: Elzy takes the pass in the flat and takes it to the red zone.
UNC is showing a lot more physicality on both sides of the ball.
8:45 pm: TOUCHDOWN CAROLINA!!! UNC passes on 3rd and short, and Nicks is left all alone in the back right corner of the endzone. UNC takes the 10-3 lead.
8:50 pm: Greg Little has 11 carries for 34 yards thus far in the game.
8:51 pm: Jabu Lovelace comes in as a change of pace, and he gets a first down.
Note to Everett Withers: Never assign Bruce Carter to cover Tiquan Underwood.
8:53 pm: Teel looks completely different after spending a few plays on the sidelines.
8:55 pm: Carolina has converted four of eight third downs. Rutgers has yet to convert on third downs. That’s why Rutgers has to settle for another field goal, and why UNC still leads, 10-6.
8:59 pm: TTTOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCHHHHHHHHHHH- DOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWWNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!
9:00 pm: On the first play of the drive, Yates fires a perfect deep ball to Tate, and he outruns the secondary for the 69 yard score. 17-6, UNC on the huge play.
9:02 pm: The Heels can wear as much Navy as they damn well please if they keep playing like this.
9:06 pm: What a hit by Robert Quinn on the draw play.
9:07 pm: UNC left wayyy too big a hole in their zone coverage on that play, a Britt goes inside the 40.
9:08 pm: INTERCEPTION! Teel makes a poor throw, but Burney makes a big play to leap for the interception.
9:10 pm: Does anyone remember the last time UNC led by double digits at halftime outside of the state? Does anyone remember?
9:14 pm: It’s officially halftime, and UNC has a 17-6 lead. The first half could not have gone much better for the Tar Heels. T.J. Yates has two passing touchdowns already, and Greg LIttle, while not having had spectacular numbers, has done enough to keep the defense honest.
On defense, there’s the obvious problem of Teel exploiting holes in the zone. But the front seven has been physical for most of the first half, and the secondary has taken full advantage of Teel’s mistakes.
Overall, we also have to deal with the possibility that Rutgers just isn’t playing very well, and could make vast improvements in the second half.
9:37 pm: The second half is about to begin.
9:38 pm: A horrible miscommunication on the part of Rutgers, and Tiquan UNderwood is forced to field the ball and go out of bounds at the 2 yard line.
9:40 pm: UNC is putting the pressure on Teel.
9:41 pm: Three and out.
9:42 pm: Worong camera, dude.
Anyway, Carolina gets the ball in Rugers territory.
9:44 pm: Yates really, really wanted that first down.
9:45 pm: That’s what Greg Little can do. He gets good blocking on the outside, and bursts for a 26 yard gain. Carolina is now in the red zone.
9:48 pm: TOUCHDOWN CAROLINA!!!
They run the end-around to Tate, and it works to perfection. UNC now has a 24-6 lead, and I doubt that Heels fans could have asked for a better start to the second half.
9:51 pm: Ugh. Jay Wooten kicks the kickoff out of bounds.
9:53 pm: If one player is going to get Rutgers’ running game going, it’s probably going to be Jourdan Brooks.
9:54 pm: YYEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAaHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! Bruce Carter intercepts the ball on the tip, and his defense does its best job of blocking, and he waltzes into the endzone uncontested. 31-6, UNC in a game that has caught me completely by surprise.
9:59 pm: UNC has yet to turn the ball over. Conversely, Rutgers has turned the ball over three times.
10:01 pm: Rutgers is 0 for 7 on third down. Part of that is sure tackling by UNC, but it’s also because Rutgers keeps throwing short of the marker and fails to get yardage after the catch.
10:03 pm: The Tar Heels are firmly planting their foot on Rutgers’ perverbial throat.
10:04 pm: Curiously, I have yet to see Shaun Draughn in this game.
It’s the middle of the third quarter, but Rutgers fans are already filing out of the satdium.
10:06 pm: TOUCHDOWN CAROLINA. Hakeem Nicks is wide open in the end zone again, UNC leads 38-6, and this game is pretty much over.
10:07 pm: At this point, I don’t know how to react to such an unexpected expect. Wait, yes I do.
10:12 pm: In all honesty, I’m still not completely comforatble with the zone defense that Carolina is running. I fear that a better-performing offense might be able to tear it apart.
10:13 pm: But hey they’ve performed well so far, especially on third down.
10:18 pm: This is the first time UNC has punted in the second half. At this point, it’s counting down the minutes until Carolina’s victory is official.
10:27 pm: As you can probably tell from the distance between updates, UNC is pretty much in control of this game. The Heels lead, 38-6 after three quarters.
10:29 pm: TOUCHDOWN RUTGERS. An imprressive drive by the Scarlet Knights ends with Brock making a catch open in the middle of the end zone. The two point conversion fails, and the score is now 38-12, UNC.
10:37 pm: Draugh’s at RB now, as UNC is driving into the red zone again.
10:41 pm: Senor Craig James is a supreme lord of waffling.
10:43 pm: Jay Wooten hits a short field goal. 41-12, UNC. Simply unbelievable.
10:52 pm: Jabu Lovelace is in as permanent QB for Rutgers.
10:54 pm: QUANTAVIUS THE MAGNIFICENT strikes again, intercepting Jabu Lovelace. Quite possibly, Quantavius Sturdivant and Jabu Lovelace might be the best two names involved in a a single play this season.
10:56 pm: Mike Paulus is in for the Heels.
11:05 pm: This game mercifully comes to and end, UNC wins, 44-12. all things considered, It’s a huge win for UNC at this point in their development.