On Thursday afternoon it was announced that UNC football will take on Auburn in the 2020 Chick-fil-A kickoff game in Atlanta. The game will take place during the second week of the 2020 season, on Sept. 12.
Three Kickoff Games in ATL in 2020:
WVU vs. Florida State on Sept. 5
Georgia vs. Virginia on Sept. 7 (Labor Day)
UNC vs. Auburn on Sept. 12
— Barrett Sallee (@BarrettSallee) July 12, 2018
This is the third time North Carolina will participate in this game. Back in 2010, a top-20 UNC squad fell to LSU, 30-24, despite outscoring the Tigers in the second half, 14-0. Two years ago, in 2016, the Tar Heels fell in another closely-contested affair: behind 222 rushing yards from Nick Chubb, Georgia defeated UNC 33-24.
Reunited with AU
The matchup for UNC with Auburn is a fun one, too. The two programs haven’t faced one another since the 2001 Peach Bowl, which North Carolina won, 16-10. Willie Parker led the Heels that day with 131 rushing yards in a New Year’s Eve victory — also in Atlanta.
Fittingly, this win, which was a dominant defensive performance, was also the last game for Julius Peppers in a UNC football uniform. That day, UNC shutdown future NFL starters Jason Campbell and Ronnie Brown.
According to Winspedia, UNC and Auburn have played six times — with North Carolina coming away victorious on four occasions. Three of those games, however, took place before 1902 — all victories for the Heels. (UNC won the 1892 contest by a score of 64-0 — where’s the defense, Auburn?!)
The two programs had a home-and-home series in the late 1980s. Pat Dye’s Tigers won both of those games, including a 47-21 victory over Mack Brown in 1988 — his debut season in Chapel Hill.