CHAPEL HILL --- With its non-conference slate now complete, North Carolina kicks off the first of seven straight Atlantic Coast Conference games Saturday, Oct. 6 vs. Virginia Tech. The game will be featured as the ACC Game of the Week on the ACC Network at 12:30 p.m. This is the ninth consecutive meeting between the two teams as members of the ACC.
Carolina is coming off a record-setting 66-0 victory over Idaho. It is the most points the Tar Heels have scored in 122 seasons of football and marked the second time this year UNC has topped 60 points. Bryn Renner was 14 of 19 for 231 yards and three touchdowns in just one half of action. Tailback Giovani Bernard scored on both of his two carries - a 2-yard run in the first quarter and a 68-yard run in the second quarter. The Tar Heels forced five turnovers, including four interceptions, and held the Vandals to just 189 yards. Carolina has given up just six points at home this season - a pair of field goals to ECU.
Virginia Tech lost last week at Cincinnati, 27-24. The Hokies are 3-2 overall, 1-0 in the ACC.
Carolina is 3-0 at home this season and 9-1 over the last two seasons (6-1 in 2011, 3-0 in 2012).
• Carolina has won three games by a combined total of 149 points. The two losses were decided by just six points. UNC's average margin of victory in its three wins is 49.7 and the average margin of defeat in two games is 3.0.
• In the second half, Carolina is outscoring its opponents 99-10, including a 66-0 mark in the third quarter. The only second half points allowed were a TD at Wake Forest and a FG at Louisville.
• UNC opponents have been held without a touchdown for 10 consecutive quarters. The last team to reach the end zone against the Tar Heels was Louisville in the second quarter. No team has scored a touchdown against UNC at Kenan Stadium this season.
• Carolina is seeking its first home win over Virginia Tech since 1938 (0-5 since).
• Carolina entered the Idaho game with three interceptions, but posted four against the Vandals, including the first career picks for T.J. Jiles, Darien Rankin and Dion Guy.
• QB Bryn Renner leads the ACC and is tied for fifth in the country with 14 touchdown passes. He has had multiple passing TDs in four of five games this season and 13 times in his career.
• Carolina leads the ACC in sacks per game and sacks allowed per game. Sylvester Williams is third overall and first among defensive tackles in the ACC with 4.5 sacks.
• Despite playing in just three games, Giovani Bernard ranks third in the ACC with seven touchdowns.
• Carolina is second in the league in scoring offense and second in scoring defense.
WHITE OUT PROMOTION
At Saturday's Virginia Tech game, Carolina fans are encouraged to wear white to help "White Out" Kenan Stadium. As part of the promotion, Carolina will wear a white helmet with white jerseys and pants. It is the first time Carolina has worn white helmets since the 1960s. The Tar Heels typically wear white jerseys in road games. This is the second straight week the Tar Heels have adoned a special helmet. Last week, Carolina wore a special American Flag NC logo on its helmet for Military Appreciation Day against Idaho.
Official White Out t-shirts are on sale at GoHeels.com, Chapel Hill Sportwear on Franklin St. and at Kenan Stadium for the entire season ($10 short-sleeve/$15 long-sleeve).
A WIN OVER VIRGINIA TECH WOULD...
• Be Carolina's first victory over Virginia Tech in Chapel Hill since 1938. The two teams have met just five times in Chapel Hill since that 1938 meeting.
• Improve the Tar Heels to 4-2 overall, 1-1 in ACC play.
SERIES NOTES VS. VIRGINIA TECH
• This is Carolina and Virginia Tech's 35th overall meeting, and the 11th in Chapel Hill. Virginia Tech leads the overall series, 18-9-6. Carolina's 20-17 win in 2009 in Blacksburg was vacated due to NCAA penalty. That was Carolina's only win since Virginia Tech joined the ACC in 2004. Five of the six ties were scoreless. The last tie was a 14-14 score in 1946.
• Virginia Tech leads the series 5-3-2 in games in Chapel Hill. Carolina's last victory in Chapel Hill was 1938. The Tar Heels are 0-4 against Virginia Tech in Chapel Hill since the Hokies joined the league in 2004.
• Three of the last four meetings have been decided by a field goal. Four of the last five have been decided by a touchdown or less. Last year's game was a 24-21 Virginia Tech victory in Blacksburg.
• Carolina and Virginia Tech met at least twice in every decade from the 1890s to the 1940s. The teams met 25 times from 1890-1946 and 14 of those times at least one team did not score.
• Tar Heel great and College Football Hall of Fame member Charlie "Choo-Choo" Justice made his collegiate debut against Virginia Tech in a 14-14 tie on September 28, 1946, in Kenan Stadium.
• Only seven of the first 25 meetings between North Carolina and Virginia Tech were played on one of the two campuses. Six of those seven games were in Chapel Hill. The other 18 were played at neutral sites, including Charlotte, N.C., Danville, Va., Winston-Salem, N.C., Roanoke, Va., Richmond, Va., Raleigh, N.C., and Norfolk, Va.
NORTH CAROLINA-VIRGINIA TECH CONNECTIONS
• Seven scholarship Tar Heels are from Virginia, including sophomore offensive tackle Nick Appel (Vienna), sophomore center Russell Bodine (Scottsville), junior linebacker Curtis Campbell (Chesapeake), sophomore linebacker Travis Hughes (Virginia Beach), junior quarterback Bryn Renner (West Springfield), sophomore cornerback Tim Scott (Fredericksburg) and redshirt freshman offensive guard Landon Turner (Harrisonburg).
• QB Bryn Renner's father, Bill, was a punter at Virginia Tech (1979-82) before playing in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers. Bill Renner led the Hokies in punting average in 1981 and 1982.
• Corey Holliday, Carolina's Assistant Athletic Director for Football Administration and a former Tar Heel standout, is a native of Richmond, Va. Holliday ranks second at Carolina in career receiving yardage.
• Many of Carolina's greatest football players have hailed from the state of Virginia. A short list includes NFL Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor (Williamsburg), two-time ACC Player of the Year Mike Voight (Chesapeake), two-time All-America William Fuller (Chesapeake), bruising halfback Ken Willard (Richmond), All-America offensive guard Ron Rusnak (Prince George), record-setting wide receiver Corey Holliday (Richmond), linebacker Dwight Hollier (Hampton), four-time 1,000-yard back Amos Lawrence (Norfolk), three-time first-team All-America cornerback Dre' Bly (Chesapeake) and record-setting quarterback Ronald Curry (Hampton).
• Three members of the Virginia Tech staff have ties to North Carolina. Assistant to the head coach Billy Hite played at Carolina from 1970-73 and coached running backs in Chapel Hill from 1974-77. Director of Recruiting Jim Cavanaugh served as receivers coach under Mack Brown at UNC from 1988-95. QB coach Mike O'Cain was the Tar Heels' offensive coordinator in 2000 under Carl Torbush.
• UNC set a single-game school record for points with 66 against Idaho. The previous record was 65 against Virginia Medical in 1914 and Wake Forest in 1928. It marks the 12th time in school history Carolina has scored 60 or more points in a game. This is the first time Carolina has scored 60 or more points twice in the season.
• Carolina also set a school record for its largest margin of victory at 66 points, breaking the former record of 65 in 1914 against Virginia Medical and 1928 against Wake Forest.
• Carolina has won three games this season by a combined total of 149 points and lost two games by a total of six. UNC's average margin of victory in three wins is 49.7 and average margin of defeat in two games is 3.0.
• The Tar Heels are second in the ACC and 12th in the country with a 43.2 scoring average.
• UNC outscored Idaho 28-0 in the first quarter and outgained the Vandals 239-18. It was the first time the Tar Heels scored four touchdowns in a quarter since doing so against Georgia Southern in 2009. The Tar Heels posted the most points in a first half (45) since scoring 52 against Duke in 2000. Carolina rushed for a season-high 287 yards. Its previous high this year was 243 against Elon. The Tar Heels gained a season-high 575 yards. Its previous high this year was 524 against Elon.
Carolina is outscoring its opponents 99-10 in the second half, including a 66-0 mark in the third quarter. The only second half points UNC has allowed this season are a game-winning touchdown by Wake and a field goal at Louisville. Carolina is outscoring its opponents 117-63 in the first half.
• Carolina is averaging 73.0 plays per game. Last season, Carolina averaged 62.5 plays per game. Carolina ran 82 plays against Wake Forest. That is the most for a UNC team since it had 87 in a triple-overtime game vs. Syracuse in 2003. It is the most in a regulation game since running 88 plays at Virginia in 2000.
• Carolina ran 63 plays through the first three quarters of the Elon game before purposely slowing down the pace. The Tar Heels finished with 74 plays for 524 yards.
• Nineteen of Carolina's 34 scoring drives this year have taken two minutes or less and eight of those have been less than a minute.
• Since allowing 39 points and 462 total yards (360 in the first half) against Louisville, Carolina's defense has held a pair of opponents to 422 total yards (233 vs. ECU; 189 vs. Idaho). The Tar Heels have held three teams - Elon, ECU and Idaho - without a touchdown.
• Carolina is ranked 16th in the country in total defense, allowing just 296.0 yards per game. The Tar Heels are 16th in rush defense, 19th in scoring defense and 25th in pass efficiency defense.
• Against Idaho, the Tar Heels held the Vandals without a first down until the first drive of the second quarter. Idaho finished with just nine first downs, the first time an opponent has been held to under 10 by Carolina since Virginia Tech recorded nine in 2006. Idaho punted 10 times, the first time Carolina has forced an opponent to punt 10 times since Oklahoma punted 11 times in the 2001 season opener.
• The Carolina defense intercepted four passes against the Vandals, surpassing the previous season total of three. Dion Guy, Darien Rankin, and T.J. Jiles each recorded their first career interceptions.
• Carolina's win over Elon was UNC's first shutout since Duke in 1999. The Tar Heels recorded their second shutout against Idaho. It is the first time Carolina has shut out two opponents in the same season since 1996 (Elon and Idaho in 2012, Clemson and Georgia Tech in 1996).
• Carolina has not allowed a single point in the third quarter in any of the first five games this season. The Tar Heels have outscored the opposition, 66-0, in the third quarter this year.
• Carolina's defense limited the Pirates to 233 total yards, including 109 rushing and 124 passing. ECU was held to just a pair of field goals. The six points scored by East Carolina were the fewest in the series since UNC shut out the Pirates 56-0 in the 1981 contest.