The coin toss at the beginning of games is a kind of silly tradition and generally meaningless, since each team should hypothetically get possession at the start of a half once, and the only thing that's decided is the order. Unless you screw it up, like UNC did.
You see, you can either choose to kick, receive, or defer your choice until the second half and give your opponent the opportunity to choose at the beginning of the game. If you defer, you will inevitably choose to receive in the second half, and thus, the team that has the option at the beginning of the game has no incentive to do anything but choose to receive.
Larry Fedora's Tar Heels did not get that memo.
Watching UNC/MTSU. MTSU apparently deferred, UNC chose a side of the field, so MTSU got the kick in both halfs. Les Miles was not involved.— Bunkie Perkins (@BunkiePerkins) September 7, 2013
Sure enough, it could come back to bite UNC: down 23-0, the Blue Raiders drove the length of the field for a touchdown on their free possession to start the third quarter.