Logan Zone

Logan: Heels need strong response against Hokies

Posted October 4, 2013
Updated October 5, 2013

A week after an embarrassing home loss to East Carolina, the North Carolina Tar Heels will be in "response" mode Saturday when they heard north to take on improving Virginia Tech, former ECU and NFL coach Steve Logan said. 

That response, whether it's positive or negative, could be the tipping point in the Coastal Division race and the Tar Heels' season. 

"It was a catastrophic loss, but now the Tar Heels, and this includes the coaching staff, have to decide what they're going to do about it," Logan said of Saturday's 12:30 p.m. kickoff (WRAL-TV) in Blacksburg. 

Logan said he would have made practice tough on UNC's players in response to the ECU game. 

"I would have told the team I was starting spring practice over, and we'd have been in full pads," he said. "I would be interested in finding out who loves the game." Logan Logan: No easy fix for Tar Heels moving forward

In terms of the matchup with the defensive-minded Hokies, Logan said the key for the Heels will be whether UNC's receivers can get open against tight man-to-man coverage and whether quarterback Bryn Renner can fit the ball into tight windows. Both things are tough for average college players, he said. 

"Beamer has done a good job of stocking their roster with good corners, and this will be the issue for UNC this week," he said. "Is Bryn Renner good enough to throw a BB through a key hole? We're going to find out a lot about him and his receivers on Saturday."

The positive in that regard for the Heels is that they were able to put up points against the Pirates despite a slow start. UNC's offense scored 21 points in the second half, and Renner threw all of his touchdowns in the final two quarters. 

Defensively, UNC will be looking to rebound from its worst effort of the season. The Tar Heels gave up 55 points and 603 total yards to the Pirates, and they'll be facing a Logan Thomas-led Hokies offense that has shown signs of life. Thomas threw for 221 yards and ran for 58 more in Virginia Tech's 17-10 win over Georgia Tech on Sept. 26. 

Defensive line play a key for NC Stave vs Wake Forest

In Winston-Salem,  the Wolfpack will be looking for a second consecutive win against a Wake Forest squad that has dropped three of four. The Demon Deacons were drubbed 56-7 by No. 3-ranked Clemson a week ago, and quarterback Tanner Price has struggled all season to successfully generate offensive rhythm. 

Logan said the Wolfpack defense has been impressive early in the season and will be an important factor in NC State's ability to break a long losing streak to the Demon Deacons in Winston-Salem. Saturday's game kicks at 3:30 p.m. on RSN and Mix 101.5 FM.

"They can pressure with four, and that front four has been pretty good, especially in the Clemson game," Logan said. "That ripples throughout the whole defense. You have more people available to cover, and you can switch up your looks more often. I know defensive coordinator Dave Huxtable is loving that right now."

Offensively, Saturday may end up being quarterback Pete Thomas' last chance to make an impression on his coaches before original starter Brandon Mitchell returns to practice. 

Mitchell broke his foot during the season opener against Louisiana Tech, and Doeren said Monday he could be back to practice next week ahead of the Oct. 12 game against Syracuse. 

Thomas was efficient in NC State's 48-14 win over Central Michigan a week ago, throwing for 244 yards and his first touchdown of the season – an 80-yard pass to Bryan Underwood. 

'Responsibility of winning' on Pirates after UNC game

While Logan admitted there were plenty of reasons to celebrate in Greenville following ECU's 55-31 win over the Tar Heels, he said there will be added pressure on the Pirates moving forward into Conference USA play. 

"There is a lot of back slapping going on," Logan said. "But looking up and down their schedule for the next few weeks, the one game that worried me is Saturday's matchup with Middle Tennessee State."

Logan said head coach Ruffin McNeill will have a unique challenge to make sure his team is ready to play. 

"It's called the responsibility of winning. When you phrase it that way it grabs their attention," Logan said. "ECU has a responsibility to go win now with what they accomplished against North Carolina."

If quarterback Shane Carden continues to replicate his performance against the Tar Heels, the Pirates shouldn't have trouble navigating the majority of their schedule. He accounted for six touchdowns (three passing, three rushing) against UNC, leading an ECU offense which scored almost at will against the Tar Heels. 

"Carden is a very effective college football player," Logan said. "I don't know if there is an NFL future in that, but that's OK. It doesn't matter. He's performing at a really high level, and he's in a really good offense for him."

10 Comments

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  • getsome Oct 5, 11:13 a.m.

    Logan has forgotten more about football than we have even learned yet. He doesn't want the headache of coaching college again. Sit back and learn people. I hate that his radio show is not on the air anymore. That was the best show they had.

  • DurhamDevil Oct 5, 9:46 a.m.

    Logan, if you know what the coach for UNC should do maybe you should put your name in the hat... View More

    — Posted by buco

    Or maybe for the UNC job that might be open by early December.

  • cmandelin Oct 5, 9:10 a.m.

    Logan, if you know what the coach for UNC should do maybe you should put your name in the hat... View More

    — Posted by buco

    In the military we call these people, like the Coach, "Been there-done that's". He is more qualified than most to provide commentary. You, not so much.

  • The Hans Oct 5, 8:55 a.m.

    The Heels are going to get spanked.

  • johnnyaudit Oct 5, 7:12 a.m.

    HEELS by 2 td's.

    — Posted by abckiller

    Bartender, I'll have what he's drinking.............

  • Wheelman Oct 5, 7:09 a.m.

    Logan, if you know what the coach for UNC should do maybe you should put your name in the hat... View More

    — Posted by buco

    Have you ever coached in D1 college or the NFL? I think he's qualified to have a real opinion based on his professional experience.

  • sophiesdad Oct 4, 9:54 p.m.

    yes sir, mr. logan is one to ask .... whatta' expert !

  • abckiller Oct 4, 8:56 p.m.

    HEELS by 2 td's.

  • buco Oct 4, 5:00 p.m.

    Logan, if you know what the coach for UNC should do maybe you should put your name in the hat for the SC job (Southern Cal)

  • Gunnstigator Oct 4, 3:36 p.m.

    Hopefully the Heels' D will respond to the challenge the coaching staff should have given them this week. I don't think a coach should have to coach effort, but the Heels defense was in dire need of motivation after that pitiful showing against ECU.

    I think State drubs WF, and ECU won't suffer a hangover after beating the Heels; they'll beat East Tennessee handily.

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NCSU 24
GASO 23
Final
DUKE 52
ELON 13
 
Final
UNC 56
LBRTY 29
7:05pm Saturday
NOR 4
DUR 1
 
Final
ECU 52
NCCU 7
 
5:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR
 
Final
TOR 2
NYY 0
Final
CWS 6
DET 3
Final
STL 1
CHC 5
Final
PIT 3
CIN 2
Final
BAL 3
MIN 2
Final
TAM 7
BOS 0
Final
KAN 2
CLE 3
Final
CWS 4
DET 8
Final
ATL 0
MIA 4
Final
NYM 2
PHI 7
Final
HOU 2
TEX 0
Final
ARI 0
COL 2
Final
STL 13
CHC 2
Final
SDP 2
LOS 1
Final
SFG 3
MIL 1
Final
ANA 2
OAK 0
Final
SEA 1
WAS 3
1:07pm Today
TOR
NYY
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
PHI
 
1:35pm Today
PIT
CIN
 
1:35pm Today
BAL
MIN
 
1:40pm Today
TAM
BOS
 
2:10pm Today
CWS
DET
 
2:10pm Today
HOU
TEX
 
2:15pm Today
STL
CHC
 
3:35pm Today
ANA
OAK
 
4:05pm Today
SFG
MIL
 
4:10pm Today
ARI
COL
 
4:10pm Today
SDP
LOS
 
4:10pm Today
SEA
WAS
 
5:10pm Tonight
ATL
MIA
 
8:07pm Tonight
KAN
CLE
 
Final
MICH 52
APPST 14
Final
NAVY 17
OSU 34
Final
UAB 48
TROY 10
Final
UVA 20
UCLA 28
Final
PURD 43
WMICH 34
Final
NCSU 24
GASO 23
Final
UMASS 7
BC 30
Final
NW 24
CAL 31
Final
NEB 55
FATL 7
Final
UMO 27
MARS 42
Final
ND 48
RICE 17
Final
MIZZ 38
SDST 18
Final
ALA 33
WVU 23
Final
AUB 45
ARK 21
Final
STAN 45
UCD 0
Final
UGA 45
CLEM 21
Final
UNC 56
LBRTY 29
Final
KSU 14
OHIO 17
Final
OKLA 48
LATU 16
Final
KST 55
SAUST 16
Final
USC 52
FRES 13
Final
MSST 49
SMISS 0
Final
OKST 31
FSU 37
Final
TEX 38
UNT 7
Final
NMU 24
UTEP 31
8:05pm Saturday
UF 0
IDAHO 0
Final
LSU 28
WISC 24
Final
OREG 62
SD 13
Final
HAW 16
WASH 17
7:00pm Tonight
TENN
UTST
7:30pm Tonight
BAY
SMU
Final
DUKE 52
ELON 13
 
Final
ECU 52
NCCU 7
 
7:05pm Saturday
NOR 4
DUR 1
 
5:05pm Tonight
DUR
NOR