Cardinal Football

Getting To Know The Opponent: North Carolina Tarheels

Rob Goldberg

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, also known as UNC, is a research university located in the small town of Chapel Hill, a college town very similar to Bloomington or Lexington, in the mountains of North Carolina. While the University of North Carolina is known for their main campus, UNC at Chapel Hill, there are actually a total of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina system.

UNC was the first public college in the state of North Carolina, and began accepting students to the school in 1795. The school currently has a student enrollment of around 25,000 students. The University’s team mascot is the “Tar Heels” which comes from the state being a large producer of both tar and pitch (resin). However, many believe that the name may have come from a story told about the Civil War in which opposing forces retreated from a band of North Carolina Soldiers, causing them to say that they would put tar on the retreating soldier’s heels so that they were forced to stay longer in battle next time.

One thing to watch for this weekend; Lamar Jackson making Tar Heel defenders look like they have tar on their heels.


Some other things you need to know about North Carolina.

Home of the GOAT & Sports Excellence

Everyone knows that North Carolina is most famous for being the alma mater of the greatest basketball player of all time, Michael Jordan. However, what most people don’t know is that North Carolina has been of the most successful Universities across America in everything athletics.

AP Photo

The school has won 40 national championships in six different sports including men’s basketball (6), women’s basketball (1), field hockey (6), men’s lacrosse (5), women’s lacrosse (2),  and men’s soccer (2) and women’s soccer (22).  The women’s soccer program at North Carolina has been considered one of the most dominant sports programs in the country, regardless of sport which would lead me to say that UNC may be home to two g.o.a.t.s.

Aside from MJ, other famous athletic alumni include former NBA & College basketball Coach Larry Brown, UNC Head Basketball Coach Roy Williams, former Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak, Tyler Hansbrough, Julius Peppers, Lawrence Taylor, Robert McAdoo, Vince Carter, and plenty of others.

Don’t Try & Order a Coke

While you can drink from an old well that may or may not bring you luck towards achieving a perfect 4.0 GPA on the first day of classes on campus at UNC, you cannot order a wonderful, thirst quenching Coca Cola on campus. It just so happens that one of the most famous alumni is the inventor of Pepsi, Caleb Bradham. Bradham would go on to attend the school of medicine at the University of Maryland where he would drop out and return to North Carolina to open an old school pharmacy that was the home of a soda called “Brad’s Drink.” This famous drink would go on to be renamed “Pepsi Cola”  in 1898, and the rest is history.

Famous Alumni

UNC is home to several big time alumni ranging in fields from soda inventors, actors, politicians/presidents, directors, activists, scientists, athletes, g.o.a.t.s, authors and many more.

Here is a ranking of my favorite North Carolina alumni.

1: Jason Kilar

–I’m sure many of you are wondering who this is. Well I wouldn’t have known who he was without a bit of a description under his name. Kilar is the former CEO and creator of Hulu. Without Kilar there would be no way for me to binge on shows such as The Mindy Project, Parks and Recreation, Shark Tank, and Bachelor in Paradise.. Which MAY be the best reality show of all time (DON’T @ ME)

2. Michael Jordan

–Number 2, say what? Yeah he’s awesome and is forever going to be the greatest player of all time, but c’mon “The Ceiling is Roof,” what does that even mean?

3. Caleb Bradham

–The dude invented a drink that everyone is kind of a fan of, but only when there isn’t a Coca-Cola around. Still pretty cool though.

4. Andy Griffith

–Best theme show song of all time, but I can admit I’ve never actually seen the show Stuart Scott

5. Stuart Scott

–Who didn’t love waking up early on a Saturday morning watching highlights from the previous night and hearing the infamous “Cooler than the other side of the pillow” or countless other catch phrases. Stuart, you’re the real g.o.a.t. Rest in Peace.

Last Place. Andre Smith

–I have no idea how many students there have been since the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill opened its doors back in 1795. What I do know is junior linebacker Andre Smith who said “He’s (Lamar Jackson) not going to be able to run on us” which is the least statement, is my least favorite of all the students. Andre Smith, be ready to eat crow and drink a Pepsi come Sunday.  

Jacob Lane

Jacob Lane joined The Cardinal Connect in August of 2017 after previously writing for on the Rivals Network. Jacob covers anything and everything Louisville Cardinals. Follow him on Twitter @Jacob_Lane08

[addthis tool="addthis_inline_share_toolbox_khm1"]
To Top