Originally written on SCACC Hoops  |  Last updated 11/15/14
Yesterday we looked at UNC's offense on first and second down and discovered there are plenty of efficiency issues on the first two plays of the four down cycle. Since the Tar Heels are facing third down more often than they did a year ago, how do they fare? Here is a breakdown of North Carolina on third down facing different yardage situations via CFB Stats. Situation Plays Yards Average Comp % 1st downs TDs 1st/TD Conv 3rd down 1-3 yards rushing 10 24 2.40 N/A 5 0 50.0% 3rd down 1-3 yards passing 9 70 7.78 77% 6 1 77.8% 3rd down 1-3 yards total 19 94 4.95 - 11 1 63.2% 3rd down 4-6 yards rushing 6 13 2.17 N/A 3 0 50.0% 3rd down 4-6 yards passing 14 61 4.36 42% 4 0 28.6% 3rd down 4-6 yards total 20 74 3.70 - 7 0 35.0% 3rd down 7-9 yards rushing 4 11 2.75 N/A 1 0 25.0% 3rd down 7-9 yards passing 16 249 15.56 75% 7 3 62.5% 3rd down 7-9 yards total 20 260 13.00 - 8 3 55.0% 3rd down 10+ yards rushing 4 -18 -4.50 N/A 0 0 0.0% 3rd down 10+ yards passing 16 181 11.31 64% 6 0 37.5% 3rd down 10+ yards total 20 163 8.15 - 6 0 30.0% 3rd down total rushing 24 30 1.25 N/A 9 0 37.5% 3rd down total passing 55 561 10.20 62% 23 4 49.1% 3rd down total 79 591 7.48 - 32 4 45.6%   As we discussed yesterday, UNC has had issues putting together consistency on first and second down. That leaves the offensive unit facing third down more often than they did a year ago. As it turns out, the play on third down isn't really that bad and the current team actually converts at a 4% higher rate than the 2012 team did. Put simply, imagine what kind of mess this team would be in if the third down conversions was the same or worse than 2012. Okay, don't think about that, no one should ever have to think about such things. A peek into the situational breakdowns offers some intriguing numbers and also some weirdness. UNC is really good at converting on third down at 1-3 yards and 7-9 yards but not 4-6 yards and anything 10+. The 10+ is expected given third and long means a pass is coming. Defense tends to cover that fairly well and when you opt for a revers on third and goal from the ten it doesn't really end well. And UNC's -18 yards in that situation can be faulted on two plays: Bryn Renner's sack versus South Carolina and Sean Tapley being dropped for a nine yard loss against Virginia Tech on the aforementioned reverse. A pair of other running plays has balanced that out to a nice, fat -4.5 yards per rushing attempt on 3rd downs of ten or more. The real mystery is why UNC is so good on 3rd and 7-9 yards and not so good on 3rd and 4-6 yards. Conventional wisdom says those two would be flipped given the distances involved. For whatever reason the 20 plays UNC has run facing 3rd down and 7-9 yards have resulted in eight first downs and three touchdowns. When it is four to six yards, UNC has run 20 plays resulting in just four first downs. Also of note is on the 14 pass attempts, the completion percentage is a paltry 42%. In all other situations the completion rate is above sixty and even seventy percent. It is possible UNC's lack of a solid running game and the offensive line issues make it easier to cover plays at this down and distance. UNC has not benefited nearly as much from screen and swing passes this season as they did when Gio Bernard was the receiver. The 4.3 yards per attempt on pass plays at this distance could seem to indicate screen or swing passes near the line of scrimmage aren't garnering much in the way of yards after the catch. As was the case on first and second down, UNC is much better of passing the ball in these situations than running it for all the reasons we have discussed ad nauseum. I doubt that leads to any change in the game planning and again perhaps the addition of T.J. Logan will help matters. The offense still needs to do more on first and second down with the third down conversion being a nice safety net from time to time. It should be noted that each of these situations offers up a small sample size which can be easily swayed by the performance in one game. The overall picture on third down points to some fairly solid execution at key moments. The problem is the entire offense across the first downs needs to step up. The 1-4 record, while not totally on the offense, indicates that while there are some things to like in the stats, the only stat that matters is still pointing the wrong direction.   This article was originally published at http://tarheelblog.com (an SB Nation blog). If you are interested in sharing your website's content with SCACCHoops.com, Contact Us.  

Clint Trickett retires due to concussions, hid two

Drew Stanton likely out for the year, postseason included

Byron Scott: ‘Idiots’ think Lakers are better team without Kobe

Undrafted QB Connor Shaw to sign with Browns, likely start

Report: Alex Smith out week 17 with lacerated spleen

Belichick: Garoppolo has better understanding of NFL


Lionel Hollins: 'Honored and blessed to coach Kevin Garnett'

Curt Schilling gives Johnny Manziel advice on Twitter

The last time the Lions won in Green Bay

Carmelo Anthony: The Knicks are dying

Andre Johnson willing to take pay cut with Texans?

Mets star David Wright reaches out to sons of slain NYPD officer

WATCH: Craig Sager is touched by outpouring of support during leukemia fight

Hiroki Kuroda returns to Japan, ditches Yankees

Kevin Garnett: ‘very weird’ to see Celtics without Rajon Rondo

Report: New Jersey Devils fire head coach Peter DeBoer

Mark Richt confirms Todd Gurley will leave UGA for NFL

Frank Gore: Colin Kaepernick is 'not broke'

The story of Morgan Bulkeley and birth of National League

Five breakout stars in 2014

The 2014 NFL All-Help Offense

Five things the world learned about the NBA on Christmas

What if Bear Bryant coached in the NFL?

The year’s 10 most notable sports media stories

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Five breakout stars in 2014

The 2014 NFL All-Help Offense

Five things learned about NBA on X-Mas

What if Bear Bryant coached in the NFL?

Carmelo Anthony: The Knicks are dying

The last time the Lions won in Green Bay

Year's most notable sports media stories

'Roberto Gronkowski wishes fans Feliz Navidad

Are the Seahawks back on track?

Wright reaches out to slain officer's sons

Q&A with Rich Eisen; TNF, DirecTV and living in LA

Dan Le Batard sums up Miami's relationship with LeBron

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.