CHAPEL HILL — Playing without quarterback Sam Howell, North Carolina ran for 305 yards to beat Wofford 34-14 on Saturday, becoming bowl eligible in the process.
Howell, who was a game-time decision, missed the first game of his career due to an upper-body injury suffered against No. 20 Pittsburgh last week. Jacolby Criswell started for the Tar Heels and threw for 125 yards, adding 66 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Freshman Drake Maye took over after halftime and finished with 89 yards.
The Tar Heels (6-5, 3-4 Atlantic Coast Conference) never trailed in a Senior Day win where they held the Terriers (1-10, 0-8 Southern Conference) to 242 total yards and rode a ground game that scored three times.
British Brooks led the Tar Heel rushing attack with 89 yards and two touchdowns, while Ty Chandler added 78 yards.
Saturday might have marked a home finale for Howell, a junior and top NFL prospect who participated in the team’s Senior Day festivities.
Terrier quarterback Peyton Derrick finished with 37 passing yards and 69 rushing yards.
THE TAKEAWAYUNC: Howell started North Carolina’s 2019 season opener as a true freshman and, until Saturday, had played every game since. In that time he’s set numerous UNC career records, including passing yardage and passing touchdowns.
Against Wofford, the Tar Heels got their first extended look at how next season might look without him. Both Criswell and Maye were efficient, combining to complete 18 of 28 passing attempts and each leading multiple touchdown drives.
With the win, UNC is now bowl eligible for the third straight year.
Wofford: The Terriers started the season with a 24-22 win over Elon and have dropped 10 straight games since.
UP NEXTUNC: The Tar Heels close the regular season next Friday in Raleigh against No. 25 North Carolina State.
Wofford: Saturday marked the end of a one-win season for the Terriers.