ACC Football Notebook
The ACC notebook …
CHAPEL HILL ó When Butch Davis coached at Miami, his defenses weren’t shy about telling opponents how good they were.
Linebacker Quan Sturdivant sees signs that his North Carolina team is developing self-confidence.
“We’re going out there, trying to get a little bit of a swagger,” Sturdivant said with a wry smile.
Now the Tar Heels hope to give themselves something to brag about. They bring back an Atlantic Coast Conference-best nine starters from last year ó but that unit ranked 11th in the league in total defense, was next-to-last against the pass and gave up huge chunks of yards at inopportune times.
North Carolina gave up at least 300 yards in each of its last five games last season, a major reason why they were 2-3 down the stretch. Three of those foes ó Georgia Tech, North Carolina State and West Virginia in the Meineke Bowl ó cracked 400 yards.
“Consistency ó there were pieces of the defense that played brilliantly,” Davis said. “There were games that we created turnovers. There were games that we played extremely well against the run. There were games we played extremely well against teams that threw the ball. We’ve got to put those kinds of games together for 60 minutes.”
UP SPILLER’S ALLEY
Clemson star C.J. Spiller has bowling on his mind. But this time, it involves an alley and pins, not a game on New Year’s Day.
Spiller says he enjoys bowling, goes about once every two weeks and carries a 150 average.
“I need to get it up if I want to on the big stage,” Spiller said with a smile.
Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer is one of the winningest active coaches in the country, and that status surely give him some standing among fellow coaches.
The Hokies open against No. 5 Alabama in Atlanta in a game that will help the winner ó probably more than it should, he said, because the preseason polls can’t help but be artificial with no results yet.