Besides the defensive tackles, the UNC secondary is probably the strongest area of the Tar Heel defense.
The Heels return all four starters, an area where experience was lacking last year.
With three sophomores and a senior starting this year, UNC could have one of the most dominant secondaries in the ACC.
CB Kendric Burney
50 total tackles
One tackles for loss
One sack, one interception
Burney started last year as a redshirt freshman, making 50 tackles as the Heels looked to find depth at the cornerback position.
Burney gave up his position as a reserve outfielder on the Carolina baseball team so he can focus on football and head coach Butch Davis said that it has, "made a dramatic difference in him [football wise]."
Burney should have a good season for the Heels as he and the rest of the squad continue to mature.
CB Charles Brown
59 total tackles
Five tackles for loss
One sack, two interceptions
Brown was another freshman starting last season as Davis tried to figure out the make-up of his team.
Brown finished with 59 tackles, tied for second on the team, and five tackles for loss; not bad in your first full season of play.
Along side Burney, this cornerback duo should put a lot of pressure on opposing receivers, letting their talented safeties roam around and make plays.
FS Deunta Williams
57 total tackles
Two tackles for loss
No sacks, three interceptions, FF
2007 ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year
Williams had a lot of expectations for the Heels at the 2008 Media Day, expressing that the Heels would win the division and contend for an ACC championship.
And why should Tar Heel fans believe the young safety?
With only a year of experience, Williams looks to become a standout safety, not only in the ACC, but nationwide.
If Williams continues to bring his big play ability to the field the Heels have a great chance to keep every game close defensively.
SS Tremaine Goddard
59 Total Tackles
2.5 tackles for loss
One sack, two interceptions, three FF
And now we get to the lone senior in the secondary, a guy who has seen the bad times in a Carolina uniform and may get a chance this year to start bringing in the good times.
Goddard is a hard-hitting safety, forcing three fumbles last season, and also finished tied for second in total tackles with 59.
If Goddard can stay healthy and be on the field, a combo of Williams and himself would be a strong, intelligent duo, and the senior leadership Goddard brings to the young secondary could be more valuable to them than any playbook ever would.
That's it for the 2008 Tar Heel secondary. Up next, the final installment of my Tar Heel Position Preview, the specialists.