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The University of North Carolina Tar Heels are [REDACTED] this [REDACTED]: Sherman's March to the Sea

This week, Sherman's March to the Sea takes a look at the [REDACTED] North Carolina Tar Heels, the true [REDACTED] of [REDACTED].

The following was found in a messenger's satchel, wrapped up with Lee's orders for the Battle of Antietam and three cheap cigars. The document in question was on official NCAA letterhead, and all redaction was done prior to the copy being delivered unto General Sherman's field HQ.

While we may never know the true meaning of this document, we do know that [REDACTED]

UPDATE: Through painstaking research and laborious laboratory labor, we have ascertained the true nature of the document at hand. Here is that transcript:

The University of North Carolina was the first team to make use of the forward pass. They introduced this revelation to gridiron back in 1895, and have largely been resting on their laurels ever since. Currently the school is best known for the astonishing breadth and depth of its NCAA violations, the investigation of which has been going on since roughly the beginning of the siege of Chattanooga, and the fact that the school's current football coach is named after a hat.

North Carolina plays at Kenan Stadium, a four-hour traffic jam with a few bleachers attached to the side of it. Located on campus in Chapel Hill, it combines the comfort of a concrete blockhouse with the easy access of a supermax facility. Entire generations have been born, grown old and died attempting to navigate the traffic patterns around the stadium on game day.

The team is, much to their surprise, the reigning champions of the ACC's Coastal Division, having managed to dodge Clemson, FSU, and Notre Dame during the regular season. When faced with quality opponents, they promptly threw up all over themselves against an underwhelming South Carolina team, the aforementioned Clemson in the ACC Championship, and Baylor, their bowl opponent in the Something-or-Other Citrus Bowl.

It should also be noted that in the pre-conference part of their schedule, they did administer a 48-14 stomping to the hapless men of Illinois. The following week Delaware actually made more of a game of it.

Under the Barksdaleian leadership of Coach Larry Fedora, purloined from Southern Mississippi in hopes of leading the program back to the giddy heights of not winning conference championships it had previously achieved under such luminaries as Carl Torbush and Mack Brown (who wisely got the hell out of town as soon as Texas backed a dump truck full of money up to his house). Fedora's major contributions to the program can be summed up as follows: 1-He appears to be less interested in checking off every infraction in the NCAA rule book than former coach Butch Davis 2-After several years of fits and starts, he has gotten the offense humming and 3-After churning his coaching staff like the New Madrid Fault, he hired former Auburn coach Gene Chizik to run his heretofore hapless (and by "hapless" I mean "gave up 70 to East Carolina") defense. Chizik, who set some kind of record for "shortest time between winning a national championship and getting run out of town" down Auburn way, brought the arcane art of tackling to Chapel Hill, thus pretty much single-handedly providing last year's improvement over the mediocrity that had come before. What this means, of course, is that if Chizik maintains this success, he'll very quickly get another head coaching job and UNC will be back where it started, which is to say giving up 68 points to Georgia Tech.

The key to this year's team is their new quarterback, Jake Trubisky, Trubisky, a junior, is stepping into the shoes of the notably talented Marquise Williams, and doing with a name that sounds like he's subbing in for the second woodwind player in an authentic polka band. As Trubisky goes, so will go the Tar Heels, who are enormously dependent on the quarterback spreading the ball around to keep up their frenetic offense. Their defense still looks to have trouble stopping the run, so if UNC regresses even a small amount from last year's nation-best performance on the offensive side of the ball, they are going to be in for a lot of afternoons longer than the average evening on Snodgrass Hill.

Of course, the wild card in all this is the NCAA, which thus far has approached the nefarious goings-on in Chapel Hill with all the subtlety and consistency of a starving wolverine let loose in a steakhouse. At the moment, the NCAA seems largely intent on heaping calumny on the women's basketball team, but the possibility remains that they'll reverse themselves and once again land on the football team's doorstep. And if that happens, it's anyone's ballgame.

Except, possibly, for Larry Fedora's.