North Carolina wins home opener, beats James Madison 56-28

North Carolina's Elijah Hood (34) jumps over James Madison's Rashad Robinson (22) in the first half of an NCAA college football game in Chapel Hill, N.C., Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016. (Gerry Broome)

Mitch Trubisky threw for a career-high 432 yards and three touchdowns while setting two school records to help North Carolina beat James Madison 56-28 in Saturday's home opener.

Trubisky completed 24 of 27 passes, including a program single-game record of 18 straight before calling it a day early in the fourth. He also has thrown 156 consecutive passes without an interception, breaking a record that had stood since 1997.

"He's getting better and better, and more comfortable and more comfortable," UNC coach Larry Fedora said. "Now as you see him get more comfortable, you're seeing Mitch Trubisky come out now. You're seeing the guy that can do all the things that we think he can do."

Meanwhile, Elijah Hood and T.J. Logan combined to rush for five scores for the Tar Heels (2-1), who finished with 635 yards and didn't punt until midway through the fourth quarter.

Khalid Abdullah ran for 116 yards and two touchdowns for the Dukes (2-1), who scored touchdowns on all three first-quarter drives. But they couldn't keep up with the Tar Heels' humming offense and didn't reach the end zone again until the third quarter after UNC led by 21.

"They've got some great athletes, but we made some mistakes there early that gave them some real cheap ones, some easy scores where they didn't have to work very much," JMU coach Mike Houston said. "That's our fault."

THE TAKEAWAY

JAMES MADISON: The Championship Subdivision Dukes moved the ball against a power-conference opponent just like they did in their first two games. That's a promising sign entering league play for a unit that has rushed for 1,019 yards this year.

NORTH CAROLINA: This was a reminder of what UNC's offense can do, not to mention allowing Trubisky to build rhythm in his third game as a starting QB. But the banged-up defense isn't in a great spot entering Atlantic Coast Conference play after allowing 495 yards.

UP NEXT

JAMES MADISON: The Dukes, who won a share of the Colonial Athletic Association title last year, open league play at Maine in the first meeting since 2012.

NORTH CAROLINA: The reigning Coastal Division champion opens Atlantic Coast Conference play at home against Pittsburgh, which finished second in the division last year. UNC won last season's meeting 26-19 on the road.
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sportsUNC Tar HeelsChapel Hill
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