With the cancellation of this past Saturday’s game and a regularly scheduled bye week this weekend, it almost feels like we are back in preseason mode. Even with that, it has still been an active week around Tar Heel football. Here are the top headlines that you may have missed this week.
Trey Morrison Will Make the Move to Safety
With Myles Wolfolk being deemed academically ineligible last Thursday, the Tar Heels have a big hole to fill on the back end of their defense. In Monday’s virtual press conference with the media, Brown addressed the situation and explained that the Tar Heels will move a veteran from another position into that starting role. Starting junior nickelback Trey Morrison will start the first game of his career at safety when the team returns to action on October 3rd. While that may be concerning to some, Morrison is a strong tackler out of the nickelback position and he spent most of this preseason taking snaps all over the secondary for a case like this. There is also still some good depth at the position behind Morrison, so if he was to struggle there is talent behind him that could hold their own in the position. At the nickelback position, it would appear that true freshman Ja’Qurious Conley will now be a starter, a position that will now be extremely interesting to keep an eye on.
State of North Carolina to Allow 7% Capacity in Stadiums
On Tuesday, North Carolina governor Roy Cooper announced that the state was going to start allowing a limited number of people at “large outdoor event venues” starting next Friday. This announcement followed last Friday’s announcement that the governor had approved the request of parents to attend games, after the request was initially turned down when it was first submitted. That means that after having no fans in the stands for the team’s first game of the season against Syracuse, the team will at least have some fans present for the crucial matchup with Virginia Tech on October 10th in Chapel Hill. At 7% capacity, that means that there will be as many as 3,535 people in attendance for the matchup with the Hokies. While that number isn’t huge, any sort of fan environment is an advantage over only an artificial fan environment and should help to provide a little spark when needed for this team going forward.
Major Target on Offensive Line to Announce His Commitment on Friday
For the first time in a while, a major target in the 2021 class is set to commit. 2021 4✮ OT Diego Pounds announced on Monday that he was going to announce his commitment on Friday afternoon. The road-grading offensive tackle from Millbrook High School in Raleigh, NC has been one of the staff top priorities since they offered him back on August 4th and heading into his decision, the Tar Heels are likely to have a hat on the table for this talented in-state lineman. The only question now is did the Tar Heels enter the race at the perfect time or did they wait just a little too long.
Tar Heels Crack the Top 12 For 2022 OT
While the 2021 is getting all of the attention, the team did receive some good news on the 2022 trail over the weekend. On Sunday, 2022 5✮ OT Gunner Givens announced his top twelve and in a little bit of a surprise, the Tar Heels were named amongst those twelve. The 6’6, 275 lbs. tackle is one of the top prospects in the 2022 cycle, but as the staff showed in the 2021 cycle, they are going to be a factor with some of these highly-rated prospects. Another thing that is notable with Givens is the fact that he does hail from the state of Virginia and the Tar Heels appearance in his list continues to show the teams growing footprint in the state of Virginia.