Recently I've been getting a lot of grief on Twitter because I tweeted out on Saturday that I was scared for the Hurricanes upcoming game against the North Carolina Tar Heels. Due to the fact that I just don't want to explain myself again, I thought, why not just write an article about it?
Ok I’m scared to play UNC— We’re On To UNC (@hurricanesmarsh) August 31, 2019
Here’s the thing, since I've been a fan of the Canes, which is about 16-17 years, the Tar Heels have given Miami fits almost every season. Starting in 2004, when UNC knocked off a 6-0 and 3rd ranked Hurricanes team on a last second field goal for the upset. Ever since then, they’ve been a nightmare.
Again in 2007, when again in Chapel Hill and we watched T.J. Yates and Hakeem Nicks go wild on the Miami defense, and defeat the Canes 33-27. From 2004 to 2009, UM lost to the UNC three out of five meetings. In 2009, once again in Chapel Hill, it seemed Jacory Harris threw about 34 interceptions as the 15th ranked Hurricanes never had a chance in a 33-24 loss.
And the worst part is, Miami always seems to struggle and lose against UNC even though the Hurricanes are the better football team. In 2004, 2007, 2009, it was nearly always the case. 2017 is probably the best example. Coming into the game with an unblemished 6-0 record, on paper it looked like Miami would steamroll the 1-7 Tar Heels. Wrong! The Canes barely escaped with a 24-19 victory, thanks in large part to Braxton Berrios and Jeff Thomas hauling in touchdowns from Malik Rosier.
Perhaps the one season when Carolina was undoubtedly better than Miami was in 2015, and the results showed that. The game was never close, not by a long shot, as Marquise Williams and UNC shut down the Canes 59-21.
So yes, that’s why I'm scared of playing the Tar Heels, and going up to Chapel Hill intimidates me even more. And I know that Canes fans like to put on the attitude that they’re never scared to play another school, and they say if you are scared then you’re not a true fan, but to be completely honest that’s bogus. Just because you’re nervous for a game doesn’t mean at all that you’re not a true fan. To me, if you put on the act that you’re “never” scared, then that’s just being delusional in my honest opinion.
I understand that Manny Diaz is head of our program now, and I'm honestly very confident that he and quarterback Jarren Williams will lead Miami to a successful season, but this is the one game every year always I'm nervous for.
Remember, I'm not as old as some Hurricanes fans. I wasn’t alive for four of the national championships, and I don’t remember a thing from 2001, so bare with me if my confidence in Miami isn’t as high as yours. All I know is that since 2004, the Canes are 8-7 against UNC, and 3-4 when they play at Chapel Hill.
Last year was awesome, but I don’t think Miami will be scoring three defense touchdowns again, though that 47-10 win was probably the highlight of the season. If Romeo Finley wants to run back another interception this Saturday like he did last year, I wouldn’t be opposed.
UNC is coming off an unexpected 24-20 win against the South Carolina Gamecocks this past week, as head coach Mack Brown and true freshman quarterback Sam Howell carried the Tar Heels to a victory.
Do I believe that the Hurricanes will win on Saturday? Yes. However, am I shivering in my Sperry’s just thinking about the game? Perhaps.