UNC preparing for Hokie’s emerging running back


CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN)– It’s a ranked showdown Saturday between No. 8 North Carolina and No. 19 Virginia Tech.

The Hokies beat Duke 38-31 on Saturday with help from a record breaking day by running back Khalil Herbert.

“He is a superstar. He’s one of the best running backs in the country, he’s not just good. He’s the difference to me in their team from last year to this year,” said UNC head coach Mack Brown.

Herbert rushed for 207 yards and two touchdowns. He also returned three kickoffs for 150 yards. The Tar Heel defense was impressed with his play Saturday.

“When it comes to contact he likes to put his shoulder down and drag tacklers along with him. So I think it’s a combination of the offensive like and them having a really special back. Not only in the run game but in the passing game too,” said linebacker Jeremiah Gemmel.

The Kansas transfer’s 357 all-purpose yards were the most in program history. He also became the first Virginia Tech player with at least 100 yards rushing and 100 yards on kickoff returns in a single game.

So how do the Tar Heels prepare for such a dynamic player? Play their game.

“I think he’s a good back overall. Definitely very explosive, definitely very strong, definitely willing to put that shoulder down and make cuts. As far as I go, straight to the point of attack. Play in the backfield and things like that. Can’t really get into a dancing game with him and stuff. You got one shot and you can’t miss. Because a guy like that can take it to the house,” said defensive lineman Tomari Fox.

Kickoff is 12 p.m. Saturday in Chapel Hill.

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