WINSTON-SALEM — North Carolina running back Giovani Bernard said he felt, “great,” on Monday after leaving the Tar Heels’ season-opening victory against Elon with an undisclosed injury. But Bernard didn’t feel well enough Saturday to play against Wake Forest.
He dressed for the game, but watched it from the sideline.
“He went out before the pregame, and we wanted to work him out and see how he felt,” North Carolina coach Larry Fedora said. “And it just didn’t feel right for him. And so at that point, we decided there was no reason for him (to play). We weren’t going to take a chance there.”
Fedora said he wasn’t worried about Bernard’s status going forward. North Carolina’s next game is at Louisville next Saturday.
“I’m not concerned,” Fedora said. “… I don’t think he’s that far away.”
Renner takes a knock: Tar Heels quarterback Bryn Renner briefly left the game in the second quarter after sustaining a hard hit near the Wake Forest goal line. Attempting to score on a run, Renner collided with Wake Forest safety Duran Lowe at the one-yard line.
Renner remained on the ground for several moments but walked off the field. He said after that the hit knocked the wind out of him, and he reentered the game on North Carolina’s next possession, which ended when he fumbled.
Wake turned the turnover into a touchdown that gave the Deacons a 21-14 lead.
“He felt like he was ready to go, and the medical staff felt like he was ready to go,” Fedora said. “And to all indications, he was. But the ball came out on that series, so that’s something that I’m going to question myself on that deal.”
Barth sets record: Casey Barth set a North Carolina record with his 55th career field goal, breaking the record held by his older brother Connor, who played from 2004-07.
“He texted me last night,” Casey Barth said. “He said, ‘Take it easy on breaking my record.’ ”
Barth tied the record with a 25-yard field goal in the third quarter, then broke it from 30 yards out in the fourth.
“It feels good,” Barth said. “It would certainly feel better if we’d have won. But it’s nice to come this far.”
Etc.: Wake won its ACC opener for the seventh consecutive season. … Demon Deacons coach Jim Grobe is now 31-8 against in-state opponents. … Wake QB Tanner Price had two rushing touchdowns for the first time in his career.