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Tee It Up: College Football Practice Cranks Up In NC

Kenan Stadium

Footballs are flying once again in the Triangle, and across the state. The three ACC schools in the area have all begun practicing for the upcoming college football season.  UNC and Duke began drills last Friday while N.C. State took to the field on Saturday. 

The Wolfpack is looking to improve on last year's three-win season.   Duke will be trying for a second consecutive trip to the conference championship game. 

Expectations are high in Chapel Hill.  The preseason coaches poll ranks the Tar Heels 23rd in the nation.  Head coach Larry Fedora says players have returned with a great attitude.

'Everybody's hopes are high and they're excited. They were all flying around.' - Coach Larry Fedora

"Everybody's hopes are high and they're excited," Fedora said.  "They were all flying around.  But, again it was all about the recall for the coaches, seeing how much they've done over the summer: What they knew, what they didn't know. And we were really pleased."

Fedora says even at this early stage, his experienced players are relishing their roles as leaders, and they are helping to guide the younger players.

"All the freshmen that came in for the month of July... We were really pleased with how much the older guys have done with them, how quickly they're picking things up. So we got quite a bit accomplished.  We've got a long way to go," he said.

The first games for all three schools are less than a month away on August 30th.  UNC will host Liberty University.  Elon will make a short bus trip to Durham to face Duke.  N.C. State will take on Georgia Southern in its opener in Raleigh.

Gurnal Scott joined North Carolina Public Radio in March 2012 after several stops in radio and television. After graduating from the College of Charleston in his South Carolina hometown, he began his career in radio there. He started as a sports reporter at News/Talk Radio WTMA and won five Sportscaster of the Year awards. In 1997, Gurnal moved on to television as general assignment reporter and weekend anchor for WCSC-TV in Charleston. He anchored the market's top-rated weekend newscasts until leaving Charleston for Memphis, TN in 2002. Gurnal worked at WPTY-TV for two years before returning to his roots in radio. He joined the staff of Memphis' NewsRadio 600 WREC in 2004 eventually rising to News Director. In 2006, Raleigh news radio station WPTF came calling and he became the station's chief correspondent. Gurnal’s reporting has been honored by the South Carolina Broadcasters Association, the North Carolina Associated Press, and the Radio Television Digital News Association of the Carolinas.
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