Red Flags: 5 college football teams on upset alert in Week 3

  • Could UNC find itself in trouble again?
  • Two SEC teams caught in bad spots
  • Ohio State could shock the world in the wrong way
Youngstown State v Ohio State
Youngstown State v Ohio State / Lauren Leigh Bacho/GettyImages
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4. North Carolina Tar Heels

Opponent: Minnesota | Time: Saturday, Sept. 16, 3:30 p.m. ET (ESPN) | Spread: UNC -7.5

Going into last week, there's a high chance that I was over my skis reacting to North Carolina's statement Week 1 over South Carolina. It turns out, that game might've told us a lot more about the lack of quality for the Gamecocks and a lot less about what the Tar Heels are this season.

Case in point, UNC followed that game up by hosting Appalachian State and, for the second year in a row, getting taken to the wire. This time around, Mack Brown's team went into double overtime against the Mountaineers, but still did escape with the win in Chapel Hill.

Now comes an even more fascinating test to visit Kenan Stadium this week with the Minnesota Golden Gophers coming to town. PJ Fleck's group hasn't been great in their 2-0 start, but they do present a difficult challenge.

UNC's offense remains its lifeblood, but Minnesota's defense is by far its greatest strength, at least on paper. They have only played Nebraska and Eastern Michigan, so perhaps that's overblown. But if that's not the case, the Golden Gophers should find some success against a still-shaky Tar Heels defense, especially if Athan Kaliakmanis can uncork any big plays that would put the pressure on Drake Maye to answer.

My belief remains that North Carolina is the better team. But this situation, especially in a possible lookahead spot with Pitt looming next week, is not exactly favorable for the Tar Heels.