Posted by Chip Patterson
After being ruled out for the fifth game in a row, North Carolina is exploring the possibility of redshirting senior kicker Casey Barth.
"Right now we are not ready for Casey to kick," interim head coach Everett Withers explained on the ACC's weekly teleconference. "In fact, we're investigating the situation of possibly redshirting him. We're going to look into the ACC office about a hardship possibility.
"But we don't want to put the young man out there. Casey's still not a hundred percent, and since that leg has been bothering him, we just felt like in our best interest and in his also, and his family's and this football team, not to push him out there, not to rush him. He's still not a hundred precent, and I don't think he's headed in that direction."
Barth played through a strained groin for the first three games of the season, kicking 11 extra points and field goal. But since re-aggravating the injury against Virginia has been sidelined nursing the leg. Barth is just four field goals away from breaking the school record set by his big brother Connor, now with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Freshman Thomas Moore has assumed the kicking duties in Barth's absence.
Like his brother, Barth has delivered some clutch field goals for the Tar Heels in his career. But his absence has only been felt in extra points and kickoffs, with North Carolina only attempting three field goals through seven games. Barth hit the first, with Moore going 1-2 since the senior's injury. North Carolina has actually been one of the more efficient red zone teams in the ACC, scoring touchdowns on 19 of their 24 visits.
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