Virginia executed a perfect fake field goal to score its first touchdown versus North Carolina.
Points are premium early for the Cavaliers and Tar Heels, and with his kicking game struggling, Virginia head coach Bronco Mendenhall opted for some trickery to help his team get its first points of the game. Facing a fourth down from the 11-yard line, Virginia lined up initially for a field goal, but before the snap they shifted the formation.
They set heavy on the left with kicker Sam Hayward lined up in the shotgun. The fake was apparent, as North Carolina’s defense shifted to adjust. But, no one saw long-snapper/tight end Evan Butts turning around and tossing the ball to backup quarterback Matt Johns, who had moved from the holder spot as the wing back.
Johns floated the pass back to Butts, who ran into the end zone uncovered for the touchdown.
Prior to the score, Virginia had punted on each of its possessions.
It was slow developing and bizarre, but clever all in the same. Mendenhall showed he is willing to pull out all the stops to get a win over the No. 22 Tar Heels.