If the Virginia Tech-at-North Carolina football game on Saturday boils down to strength vs. strength, it will be the Hokies' secondary against the Tar Heels' wide receivers, specifically junior Hakeem Nicks and senior Brandon Tate. Those confrontations also will be an area of interest to the five NFL teams -- Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, New York Giants, New York Jets and Oakland Raiders -- that have requested passes to scout players in the 3:30 p.m. game at Kenan Stadium.
Eyes on Heels, Hokies
The News and Observer
Blinking isn't advisable when North Carolina's Brandon Tate has his hands on the football.
That split second is about all the time that Tate has needed to get open for big gains or touchdowns in UNC's first two games.
Blur Blur: UNC's Tate a nightmare for defenders
The Winston-Salem Journal
The last time a North Carolina football team started 3-0 was 1997.
The argument could be made it was also the last time the Tar Heels had a home game as important as this week's meeting vs. Virginia Tech.
An impressive win at Rutgers last week has suddenly propelled UNC (2-0, 0-0) into a role of relevance in the ACC heading into Saturday's 3:30 p.m. kickoff against the Hokies (2-1, 1-0).
UNC fans impressed with start
The Asheville Citizen-Times
Despite all its complexities and mind-numbing permutations, the Bowl Championship Series offers an Athletic Coast Conference team a rather simple and linear path to the Orange Bowl, one of the BCS' five major games: Win your division, make the ACC championship game, win that, book your plane tickets to Miami.
Saturday's game at North Carolina is an important part of Virginia Tech taking that first step toward winning the Coastal Division. The Hokies are inexperienced and flawed, but none of the other teams in their division -- Carolina, Georgia Tech, Duke, Miami and Virginia -- have proved themselves wart-free, either.
Defeating the Tar Heels could help Tech stake early claim to Coastal Division
The Richmond Times
Virginia Tech's trip to the University of North Carolina on Saturday means two things: Stephan Virgil is scrambling for extra tickets and the Hokies can probably expect something big from the junior cornerback.
Virgil grew up in Rocky Mount, N.C., roughly a two-hour drive from UNC's campus. He's trying to accommodate requests from friends and family for as many as 16 tickets. Players get four tickets each, but he'll be begging teammates for any they aren't using.
N.C. native knows you can go home again - and dazzle
The Virginian Pilot