CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The 127th edition of the South’s Oldest Rivalry between Virginia (3-5, 1-4 ACC) and No. 17 North Carolina (7-1, 4-0 ACC) will take place on Saturday (Nov. 11) at Scott Stadium. The third-most played series in FBS history is scheduled for a noon start on ACC Network and the Virginia Sports Radio Network.
GAME COVERAGE: In addition to the ACC Network broadcast, authenticated subscribers can stream the game on the ESPN app and ESPN.com. The pregame radio show on the Virginia Sports Radio Network will begin at 11 a.m. Fans can listen to the game on the Virginia Sports App, the TuneIn App and any one of the VSRN affiliates across the commonwealth. For a list of expanded coverage visit: virginiasports.com/radio
INSIDE SATURDAY’S MATCHUP
- Saturday marks the 127th all-time meeting between Virginia and North Carolina, a series that began in 1892. Only Wisconsin/Minnesota (130 games) and Georgia/Auburn (127 games) have played more games against one another in FBS history.
- Virginia is in the middle of a four-game homestand, only the second time in the history of the program that UVA has played four-straight Saturdays at Scott Stadium and the first time since 1970.
- North Carolina will be Virginia’s first ranked opponent this season. The Tar Heels are No. 17 in the Associated Press poll and No. 15 in the USA Today coaches poll.
- Virginia has won two of the last three home games against ranked foes, including a 44-41 victory over the then-No. 15 Tar Heels in 2020.
- UVA is 23-7 in its last 30 games at Scott Stadium. The 23 wins since 2018 are the third-most by any ACC team, trailing Clemson (30) and NC State, and the most by any Coastal Division team.
- Virginia has won four of the last five meetings against North Carolina. UVA’s loss in last year’s meeting ended a four-game win-streak over the Tar Heels, the sixth time in series history the Cavaliers had won four-straight games against UNC.
- North Carolina (4-0) and Clemson (6-0) are the only two remaining unbeaten teams in ACC play this season. UVA hasn’t won against an undefeated ACC opponent with three wins or more since topping then-No. 12 Georgia Tech 24-21 in 2011.
- North Carolina comes in as the ACC’s top offense, averaging 502.0 yards per game. The Cavalier defense has not yielded an offensive touchdown in its last eight quarters. The last touchdown allowed came in the fourth quarter against Louisville on Oct. 8.
- UVA’s all-time leader in passing yards and total offense, Brennan Armstrong is on the verge of ACC lore. The southpaw sits just 101 yards away from 10,000 yards of total offense for his career. Only 14 players in league history have reached 10,000 yards in their careers.
- The last time Armstrong faced North Carolina he set the UVA single-game passing record (554 yards) and the program’s single-game total offense mark (538). It was the most ever passing yards by a UNC opponent since Dave Brown (Duke) threw for 479 yards in 1989.
NUMBERS TO KNOW
101 – Yards Brennan Armstrong needs to reach 10,000 yards of total offense in his career. Only 14 ACC players have reached the 10,000-yard plateau.
24 – Combined number of passes defended by cornerbacks Anthony Johnson and Fentrell Cypress, tied with Illinois duo Jartavius Martin and Devon Witherspoon for the most in the nation.
334 – Number of career tackles by linebacker Nick Jackson, the third most among active power-five defenders.
8 – Consecutive quarters the Virginia defense has not allowed a touchdown. The Cavaliers have held back-to-back opponents to less than 275 yards of total offense for the first time since 2019.
LAST YEAR VS. NORTH CAROLINA
- UVA had its four-game winning streak against then-No. 21 North Carolina snapped in Chapel Hill.
- After falling behind 21-7, Virginia rallied to take a 28-24 lead at the half. North Carolina went on to outscore UVA, 35-11 in the second half.
- Brennan Armstrong broke UVA’s single-game passing record with 554 yards breaking Kurt Benkert’s mark of 455 set in 2017 against UConn. He became the first Cavalier quarterback to throw for 500 yards in a game. He threw for 364 yards in the first half, also a program record.
- Armstrong accounted for 538 yards of total offense breaking the single-game school record set by Bryce Perkins (490 yards) against North Carolina in 2019.
- Fentrell Cypress recorded his first career interception taking Sam Howell’s pass to the end zone 66 yards. The return was the 11th longest in program history.
- Dontayvion Wicks caught seven passes for 183 yards, including a 40-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter. It was the sixth most receiving yards in a game in program history.
- Noah Taylor led the Cavaliers with 12 tackles, his first double-digit tackling effort of his career.
THE SOUTH’S OLDEST RIVALRY
- This is the 127th time Virginia and North Carolina have met in the “South’s Oldest Rivalry.” The 127 meetings between the two schools are tied for the third most of any rivalry in the FBS.
- After Saturday’s game, graduate transfer Kam Butler will have played in two of the oldest rivalries in college football. Butler transferred from Miami (Ohio) where the Redhawks play Cincinnati for the Battle of the Victory Bell. Cincinnati has won 16-straight meetings including a 38-17 win on Sept. 17, 2022 at Paycor Stadium (formerly Paul Brown Stadium), home of the Cleveland Browns.
OLDEST RIVALRIES IN FBS
*Have yet to play in 2022
- Brennan Armstrong needs 250 yards passing to become the top left-handed quarterback in ACC history, a spot held by Tanner Price of Wake Forest (2010-13).
- 250 more passing yards would also move Armstrong into 13th place all-time on the most career passing yards by a left-handed quarterback in FBS history.
- Armstrong currently has 8,650 career passing yards and can move into the top-10 left-handed passers of all-time with 744 more yards.
CLIMBING THE CHARTS
- Wide receivers Keytaon Thompson and Billy Kemp IV are on pace to go down as statistically two of the top-10 receivers in UVA history.
- Thompson moved into a tie for 12th most receiving yards at UVA with 41 yards on five catches. He needs 37 yards to pass Heath Miller for the 10th-most receiving yards in school history.
- Kemp went over the 1,700 career receiving yards with 28 yards against Miami last week, elevating him to 10th on UVA’s all-time receiving list.
HIGH GRADES FOR UVA CORNERS
- Through nine weeks, the Cavaliers have two of the top three graded Power-5 cornerbacks according to Pro Football Focus. Anthony Johnson (86.8) ranks second behind Devon Witherspoon of Illinois while Fentrell Cypress ranks fifth among Power 5 corners with a grade of 85.7.
- Johnson is having the best season of his five-year college career. His 11 pass break ups are a career-high through just eight games played.
- For his career, Johnson has 37 career passes defended (30 pass break ups + 7 interceptions), the fifth most of any active FBS corner back and tops among all active Power-5 corners.
ACC SACK LEADER – CHICO BENNETT JR.
- Bennett recorded his seventh sack of the season, the most of any ACC pass rusher. He only trails the national leader Jadrian Taylor of UTEP who has eight sacks in nine games played.
POWER-5 SACK LEADERS
|1.||Laiatu Latu, UCLA||7.5|
|Felix Anudike-Uzomah, Kansas St.||7.5|
|3.||Chico Bennett Jr., UVA||7.0|
|Isaiah Foskey, Notre Dame||7.0|
|Tuli Tuipulotu, Southern California||7.0|
- Through only eight games, Bennett’s seven sacks are the most by a Cavalier since Jordan Mack (7.5) and Noah Taylor (7.0) in 2019. The last two Cavaliers to reach eight sacks in a season were Max Valles (9.0) and Henry Coley (8.0) in 2014.
JACKSON AMONG NATION’S TOP LBs
- Linebacker Nick Jackson won his first career ACC Linebacker of the Week award on Monday (Oct. 31). The senior made 14 tackles, assisted on a tackle for loss and was credited with a pass break up in UVA’s 14-12 loss to Miami. The double-digit tackle effort was the 19th of his career.
- Through eight games played, Jackson leads the ACC with 10.5 tackles per game. His 84 total tackles are also tops in the ACC and are ninth-most in the country.
SPARKING THE FIELD POSITION GAME
- Daniel Sparks has punted 34 times this season for a net average of 44.6, the second-highest in the conference and 18th best in the nation. The transfer from Minnesota has eight punts of 50+ yards (3rd most in ACC) and 11 punts inside the 20 yard line (the second most in ACC).
- Sparks currently carries the third-highest grade (79.2) of all FBS punters according to Pro Football Focus.