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The South’s Oldest Rivalry
• Virginia and North Carolina will meet for the 124th time in the South’s Oldest Rivalry, a series that began in 1892.
Virginia vs. North Carolina
• UVA trails the all-time series with North Carolina, 63-56-4.
• There is a difference in the series record between the two schools because of the game in 1956 that North Carolina forfeited for using an ineligible player. All of UNC’s games in 1956 were forfeited by conference action. Both schools count the 1956 game as a win.
• Saturday’s game will tie the rivalry for the second-longest series in NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision history.
• The two schools have met every season since 1919 and there have been only four seasons since 1900 when they did not meet (1906, 1909 and 1917-18, when football was postponed at both schools because of World War I).
Five Top Storylines
• The Cavaliers have faced the Tar Heels more than any other school (123) in program history.
• Virginia is playing its sixth night game of 2019, setting a program record for most night games in a single season. Saturday marks the first night game in series history to be played at Kenan Stadium between UVA and UNC. The series has seen three night games at Scott Stadium (2006, 2010, 2012). The Cavaliers are 63-48-1 all-time in night games, including 7-5 under Bronco Mendenhall.
• Virginia needs one win to become bowl-eligible for the third year in a row. It would mark the first time UVA was bowl-eligible in back-to-back-to-back seasons since going to four bowls in a row (2002- 2005).
• ILB Jordan Mack is No. 2 in the ACC with 7.0 sacks (No. 14 in the nation) and is No. 4 among the nation’s linebackers.
• WR Joe Reed has 2,931 career kick return yards and is averaging 29.3 yards per kick return while in a UVA uniform. He is the only player in FBS history to have 2,700+ career kick return yards and a career average per kick return of 28+ yards. He is also the only FBS player with 100+ career returns and a career kick return average of 28+ yards.
Mendenhall vs. Brown
• Saturday is the third all-time meeting between UVA head coach Bronco Mendenhall and UNC head coach Mack Brown, but the first at their respective schools.
• The two previous meetings came when Mendenhall was the head coach at BYU and Brown the head coach at Texas. Mendenhall came out on top in the last meeting during the 2013 season when his BYU Cougars defeated then-No. 15 Texas, 40-21, in Austin. Brown barely won the first meeting in 2012 when then-No. 21 Texas beat BYU, 17-16, in Austin.
The Most Offense Typically Wins
• In UVA vs. UNC games since 1940, the winning team has out-rushed the loser 58 of 76 times, with one game featuring the same yardage for both.
• The winning team has had more offensive yards 70 times and has been outgained just 15 times since 1940. UVA was the most recent team (2014) to outgain UNC and lose (443-374).
• The loser has outgained the winner just eight times since 1975, but it has happened six times in the last 18 years, including in 2007, 2008, 2011 and 2014.
On the Ground
• Since 2006, the Tar Heels have averaged 138.7 rushing yards per game vs. the Cavaliers, with UVA winning six of the last 12 meetings.
• Since 1996, UNC has scored 20 rushing touchdowns with three coming in 2015 and two coming in 1997, 2011 and 2016. In contrast, UVA has scored 31 times on the ground in that span.
• In the last 23 games, UNC’s offense has scored 56 touchdowns, with 35 coming in six games (1997, 2002, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016), while the defense has scored nine touchdowns (eight interceptions and one punt return).
Turnovers Make a Difference
• Since 1982, the Cavaliers are 16-3-1 when committing fewer turnovers than the Tar Heels. The losses occurred in 1995, 2001 and 2016, while the tie was in 1984.
• Over the last 10 years, North Carolina has committed 19 turnovers, while UVA has committed 22 (which includes 10 combined from the 2010 & 2015 games).
• North Carolina is 10-2 vs. Virginia when committing fewer turnovers.
• There have been five games since 1982 where each team committed the same number of miscues and Virginia has won four (1985, 1988, 2003, 2018).
First Family Takes in 1928 Meeting
• President Calvin Coolidge and his wife, Grace, attended the 1928 Virginia vs. North Carolina Thanksgiving Day football game at UVA’s Lambeth Field. The President was joined by the governors of both Virginia (Gov. Harry F. Byrd) and North Carolina (H.W. Chase). Over 20,000 spectators attended UNC’s 24-20 win 91 years ago. Lambeth Field’s grandstand only sat 8,000. Additional temporary bleachers helped hold the overflow crowd.
Nature of the Rivalry
• There is a strong historical lineage and academic standing between UVA and UNC.
• UVA was founded by Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States, while UNC was the first operational state university in the United States.
• UVA had its writer-in-residence William Faulkner, while UNC is the alma mater of Thomas Wolfe.
• President Woodrow Wilson attended UVA and was president of the Jefferson Literary and Debating Society, while President James K. Polk attended UNC.
• UVA and UNC were also the first future members of the ACC to be elected to the prestigious Association of American Universities. UVA was elected in 1904 and UNC in 1922.
• UVA was the opponent for the dedication game at UNC’s Kenan Stadium in 1927.
• Kenan Stadium was used as a model by the designers of Scott Stadium.