CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) -For the first time, Butch Davis must help North Carolina bounce back from a loss.
The coach hired to return the Tar Heels (1-1) to the Atlantic Coast Conference's elite will spend this week preparing for the league opener against Virginia and trying to prevent the first defeat of his tenure in Chapel Hill - a last-second, 34-31 loss at East Carolina - from becoming a losing streak.
``When you lose a ballgame, the quickest way to get over it is to get back to work,'' Davis said Monday. ``This week will be about us trying to get better, trying to bounce back emotionally and try to have our football team as well-prepared for Virginia as possible.''
Davis hopes to reverse the disturbing pattern in Chapel Hill of allowing losses to mount - and to move past a low point of a bleak 2006 that came against the Cavaliers.
The Tar Heels' abysmal performance during a nationally televised 23-0 loss in Charlottesville seemed to accelerate the firing of John Bunting, who was ousted three days later and finished out the season while North Carolina officials pursued Davis.
``That was a tough game, Thursday night, national television, but what's done is done, and we can't go and change the past,'' linebacker Mark Paschal said. ``But we'll go and prepare for them this week, and try not to worry about what happened last year.''
Against Virginia last year, North Carolina had nearly as many penalties (eight) as first downs (11), turned the ball over three times and never got anything going offensively in the nadir of a season in which the Tar Heels failed to beat a Division I-A team until their 11th game.
``Whenever you get beat by an opponent (and) you have a chance to play them next year, you always look forward to that opportunity,'' Paschal said.
Davis is coming to terms with the target that his Carolina blue-clad team always seems to be wearing. The players spoke openly a week ago of the hatred East Carolina's fan base has developed for the Tar Heels. The Pirates beat them for the first time since 1975 when Ben Hartman's last-second field goal sent Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium into delirium.
Next up: what's termed the oldest rivalry in the South and the fifth-oldest in the nation. North Carolina and Virginia have played every year since 1919 and will meet for the 112th time.
``Carolina's everybody's rivalry,'' Davis quipped.

Recent NCAAF Discussions

2017 Heisman Odds on Wed, Mar 2017 by Blade
College / NBA today on Sun, Mar 2017 by TtomBoBadly
SNOW on Tue, Mar 2017 by Michael Cash
EARLY COLL PLAYS FOR WED. on Wed, Mar 2017 by Timmy1961

NCAAF Headlines

NCAAF Top Stories

Thumbnail Updated National Championship Odds With over five months before kickoff of the new season, is Alabama still favored to win it all in 2018?
Thumbnail VA Tech opens as favorites vs WVU Some of the Week 1 lines have been released for college football and Virginia Tech has opened as a small favorite versus West Virginia.
Thumbnail Stanford QB on track for camp Stanford head coach David Shaw said that quarterback Keller Chryst is "right on schedule" for training camp.
Thumbnail Clemson has big challenge this spring The biggest question the defending national champion Clemson Tigers face this spring is who will replace leader Deshaun Watson at...

NCAAF Team Pages