8-4 UNC Gave Its Football Team 'State Champs' Rings for Beating the Likes of Western Carolina and Wake Forest

So 8-4 North Carolina decided that its 2020 season was worthy of a ring. The Tar Heels didn't play in the ACC Championship Game. They lost to Texas A&M by two touchdowns in the Orange Bowl — which they only backed into because both ACC Championship Game participants were in the College Football Playoff. But they did go 4-0 against Duke, NC State, Wake Forest and Western Carolina, so I guess that deserves a ring.

Look, I get it. The kids in any Power Five football program work incredibly hard and an 8-4 season — especially one which had as many twists and turns as the 2020 one did — is nothing to shake a stick at. But you absolutely cannot hand out these rings. If one of your most noteworthy accomplishments in a season was beating four in-state teams — with only one of them ranked at No. 23 — your season wasn't worthy of a ring.

And by the way, UNC notably did not play another in-state foe this season which could have easily rendered these rings moot to begin with.

You simply can't give out state championship rings when you lost to a Group of Five program the year before. That should be a three-year minimum ban on any sort of state champions talk.

Here are the acceptable scenarios to give out rings in college football:

- Win a national championship
- Win a conference championship
- Win a bowl game

If you do not do any of those three things, do not hand out rings.