It's not often that you hear a group of 300-pound offensive linemen called "a little thin." But that was the only phrase that Tar Heels offensive tackle Alan Pelc could use to describe North Carolina's unit this season, which has seen its depth chart shrink uncomfortably since the start of training camp. "A lot of people were worried about our depth for '09, and we really weren't. We knew we had guys to step up," redshirt freshman offensive lineman Jonathan Cooper said. "But then we've sort of been injury-plagued a little bit, just in the past couple days."
Heels hurting on the offensive line
The News and Observer
Butch Davis needed one season to get North Carolina's struggling program back into the national rankings and in contention for an Atlantic Coast Conference championship.
And expectations are high for the Tar Heels entering his third year here.
Heels face raised bar
The Associated Press
Davis is checking in the kind of players who might soon make a run to the Atlantic Coast Conference title (Brown's 1997 North Carolina defense featured Greg Ellis and Dre Bly).
Davis rebuilt sanctions-torn Miami in the late 1990s and might have become a college coaching rock star, alongside Pete Carroll, Brown, Urban Meyer, Jim Tressel and Bob Stoops, had he not bolted for the Cleveland Browns a year before Miami won the national title in 2001 under Larry Coker.
Davis enters Year 3 at Chapel Hill on the ascent. North Carolina finished 8-5 last year, and think of what it could have been had it not lost those squeakers: 20-17 to Virginia Tech, 16-13 in overtime at Virginia, 17-15 at Maryland and 31-30 to West Virginia in the Meineke Car Bowl.
Chris Dufresne's preseason top 25: No. 19 North Carolina
The Chicago Tribune