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Tar Heels look to rebound at home against Georgia Tech

Posted Thursday, September 16, 2004

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Durant tied with Justice in career record book.

Coming of a 56-24 loss at Virginia, North Carolina looks to win its first Atlantic Coast Conference game of the young season on Saturday against Georgia Tech in Kenan Stadium. Kickoff for the non-televised contest is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. The game will be carried on the Tar Heel Sports Network and a live broadcast can be heard on Carolina's official web site, TarHeelBlue.com.

The Tar Heels (1-1, 0-1 ACC) are playing their second of eight consecutive games against a team that appeared in a bowl game last season. The game is the first conference game at home for the Tar Heels, who started the season with a 49-38 win over William & Mary at Kenan Stadium.

Like Virginia last week, Georgia Tech enters the game undefeated after escaping with an improbable 28-24 victory at Clemson last Saturday. The Yellow Jackets won the game after trailing by 10 points with just over 10 minutes remaining to be played.

Carolina trailed throughout the game at No. 15 Virginia. The Tar Heels allowed the Cavaliers a series-record 549 yards of offense and allowed a school-record 238 return yards in the loss. Carolina is looking to win its first game over the Yellow Jackets since the Mack Brown era. The Tar Heels' last win over Georgia Tech was a 16-13 nail-biter in 1997 during UNC's 11-1 season. In the six-game losing streak, Carolina has scored 20 or more points five times, but has given up an average of 34.3 points in those six games.

Monogram Day In Chapel Hill
Carolina will celebrate Monogram Day on Saturday against Georgia Tech and several former letterwinners will be on hand for the festivities. Here are a few facts about Monogram Day:

• 23 sports are represented, including 12 men's sports and 11 women's.

• Approximately 300 former athletes will be in attendance.

• The earliest graduation year represented is 1934 (boxer).

• Eight people from the 1930's and 43 people from the 1940's will be in Chapel Hill.

• Two sports that North Carolina does not have anymore - boxing and men's gymnastics - will be represented.

Durant Tied With Justice
• With 54 career passing touchdowns and 10 career rushing touchdowns, quarterback Darian Durant has been responsible for 64 touchdowns in his Carolina career, tying the record held by Charlie Justice. From 1946-49, Justice scored 39 touchdowns and passed for 25. With his next touchdown, Durant will pass Justice as UNC's career leader in touchdowns responsible for.

Series Notes vs. Georgia Tech
• Carolina and Georgia Tech are meeting for the 40th time in a series the Yellow Jackets lead, 20-16-3. Carolina has lost six straight against Georgia Tech, its longest losing streak in the series.

• Carolina is 13-11-1 against Georgia Tech since the Yellow Jackets entered the ACC in 1974.

• Carolina's last win over Georgia Tech at Kenan Stadium came in 1996. Since that game, the Tar Heels have lost three straight at home.

• Georgia Tech, with 625 all-time victories, and North Carolina, with 614, are the two winningest programs in the ACC. The Yellow Jackets are 19th on the NCAA all-time win list, while the Tar Heels are 24th.

• This is the first time both teams have entered the game with at least a .500 record since 2000.

• Four Tar Heels are from the state of Georgia, including linebacker Mahlon Carey (Marietta), defensive tackle Shelton Bynum (Ellenwood), offensive guard Scott Lenahan (Marietta) and defensive lineman Xavier Rainey (Stone Mountain). Carey has started at tailback, safety and linebacker during his Carolina career. Last week at Virginia, he started at outside linebacker and made a team-high six tackles.

Durant Can Add To Georgia Tech Records
• Simply because of who the opponent is on Saturday, quarterback Darian Durant will have an opportunity to add to a couple of his unique 47 school records. He holds the school record for most total offense against one opponent (852 yards vs. Georgia Tech) and most passing yards against one opponent (806 vs. Georgia Tech).

• In three games against the Yellow Jackets, Durant 62 of 102 for 806 yards and six touchdowns. He also has scored one rushing touchdown against Georgia Tech. He has thrown more touchdowns against Georgia Tech than any other school in the ACC except NC State (7).

• Durant made his first career start in a Thursday night game at Georgia Tech in 2001, a game the Tar Heels narrowly lost, 28-21.

Potent Offense
•Statistically, Carolina's offense in the first two games of the season has been more productive than any other in John Bunting's four years as head coach. Carolina has combined for 1009 total yards of offense in games against William and Mary and Virginia, including 476 yards rushing and 533 yards passing.

• Carolina ranks second in the ACC and 18th in the country in total offense with 504.5 yards per game. Only Virginia, which gained 549 yards against the Tar Heels last week, is ranked ahead of Carolina in the conference rankings.

• Carolina is averaging 7.9 yards per play, including 5.9 yards per rush and 16.2 yards per pass reception.

• The school record for yards per game is 441.8 in 1983 (4,860 yards in 11 games).

Running Game Remains Productive
•Carolina leads the ACC with an average of 5.9 yards per carry. The Tar Heels are ranked third in the ACC and 20th in the nation in rushing offense with 238.0 rushing yards per game. Only Virginia and Wake Forest are ahead of UNC in the league rankings.

• Individually, Ronnie McGill leads the team and ranks third in the conference with 95.0 rushing yards per game. McGill started off the season with 133 yards against William & Mary, but was limited to 57 yards at Virginia.

• Jacque Lewis, who rushed for 123 yards in the season opener against William & Mary, is seventh in the league with 74.5 rushing yards per game.

• Senior tailback Chad Scott is averaging 53.0 yards per game.

• McGill, Lewis and Scott have combined to rush for 445 yards on 66 carries, an average of 6.7 yards per attempt.

• Against William & Mary, Ronnie McGill (133 yards) and Jacque Lewis (123) became the first pair of Tar Heel tailbacks to rush for 100 yards in the same game since 1994.

Spreading it around
• Twelve different Tar Heels have made receptions in 2004, including a team-high nine by sophomore wide receiver Adarius Bowman. Last season Bowman had just 10 catches all season. Sophomore Jesse Holley and junior Derrele Mitchell rank second on the team with four catches. Mitchell leads the team with two touchdown receptions.

Third-Down Efficiency
• Carolina ranks first in the ACC in third-down conversions with a 60.9 completion percentage. The Tar Heels have converted 14 of 23 attempts, including 10 of 12 against William & Mary. Last season, Carolina was sixth in the league, converting just 60 of 163 chances (36.8 percent).

Few Penalties
• Carolina ranks first in the ACC in penalties with just seven for 64 yards. The Tar Heels were penalized three times against William & Mary and four times against Virginia. Last season, Carolina was fifth in the league with 48.7 penalty yards per game.

 
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