CHAPEL HILL–We’re on the eve of the much anticipated home opener for Tar Heel football, and the team is excited about performing in front of the fans decked out in blue and white for the 12:30 pm kickoff on Saturday.

Head Coach Larry Fedora says this week presented some unique challenges for his players as they had to install a whole new game plan for Middle Tennessee State in a few days time.

“This is really the first week for us if you think about it going into a game plan that guys have to transition from one game to the next, put the other one to bed, and start learning the game plan in a short period of time,” Coach Fedora says.

Coach Fedora says the Blue Raiders offer plenty for the Tar Heels to worry about on Saturday. In fact, he says he sees a little of his own team in their offensive schemes.

“They do a lot of things on offense. When you look at them, they’re very similar to the style of offense we run. They’re going to be up-tempo, they’ve run the ball very well, they’ve got some receivers on the outside that can make plays, and the quarterback does a really nice job,” Fedora says. “This will be a big game for us.”

Good, crisp tackling was an issue for the Carolina defense against South Carolina. Coach Fedora says he understands the need for improvement in that area, but he says the injury worries always creep in.

With the difficult opening loss behind them, Coach Fedora says his team remains motivated. He emphasizes that all of UNC’s goals can still be accomplished by the end of the season.

“One game doesn’t make our season. And actually, all the goals that we have set have nothing to do with that first game. We do what we are supposed to do; people won’t even talk about that first game at the end of the year. No one will even remember it,” Coach Fedora says.

Don’t forget, WCHL has all your Tar Heel game day needs covered. On Saturday, tune in and stop by bright and early at 9:00 a.m. for  Countdown to Kickoff with Ron Stutts presented by UNC Health Care live at Rams Plaza.

And get the live game coverage with our broadcast team on WCHL and follow our live in-game tweets and photos from the press box on Twitter (@WCHL and @WCHLSports).