CHAPEL HILL – The UNC men’s basketball team took a quarter of action to get rolling before pulling away for a for a 31-point lead, 81-50.
There was some question as to which Tar Heels team would show up for Saturday’s home game vs. UNC Greensboro.
Would it be the Tar Heels that toppled two of the top teams in the nation in Louisville and Michigan State or the unit that struggled in disappointing losses to UAB and Belmont?
The Tar Heels answered in the affirmative midway through the opening half, building a 19-11 lead on a Marcus Paige jumper.
The Tar Heels went on to remove any doubt about the outcome from there, closing the half on a scintillating 25-3 run en route to an 81-50 win over the Spartans to improve to 6-2 overall.
Things turned so sour for UNCG that it had more turnovers (15) than points in trailing 44-14 at the break.
Kennedy Meeks and Brice Johnson chipped in with eight points each, while the Tar Heels defense stifled the Spartans with a suffocating man-to-man defense.
Johnson led the Tar Heels with 14 points in all, while James Michael McAdoo added 13 and Paige added 12 . Kyle Cain and Kayel Locke led UNCG with 13 points each.
UNCG (4-5) played better to open the second half, getting three baskets in the first two minutes including a Cain short jumper, but the deficit was far too big to overcome.
Nate Britt saw to that, completing a three-point play four minutes in to put the Tar Heels up 51-27.
James Michael McAdoo later put the Heels up by 30, at 63-33, with a successful drive to the basket with 8:30 remaining.
It was all Tar Heels from there and there would be little drama on this night.http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/unc-mens-basketball-dominates-uncg-81-50/
CHAPEL HILL – Check out this behind-the-scenes video of the UNC men’s basketball team celebrating Wednesday following the big win over No. 1 Michigan State!
The team also received a warm welcome home from East Lansing at the Smith Center in the early morning hours.
Video by UNC Athletics:
CHAPEL HILL – UNC men’s basketball head coach Roy Williams was not happy with the outcome of Sunday’s 63-59 loss to UAB, but his disgust started early in the contest.
Joel James knocked down a jumper 38 seconds into the game to tie it at two. He proceeded to turn to the crowd with a finger on his lips.
“I am not of their generation,” Coach Williams said. “And I am glad that I am not. I was very vicious when I (told them that), because when one of my players makes the first basket of the game and turns around and hushes the crowd, (pause) that is not a happy coach. Play the dadgum game and don’t give me all that junk. Don’t pound your damn chest and all that stuff. Play the freakin’ game.”
Carolina went up by two after that shot, but UAB followed that with a 10-2 run to take the 12-6 lead before the first media timeout.
The Blazers extended their lead to 15 with just more than two minutes left in the first half.
The rest is history, and the Head Coach was still steaming Monday night.
“I wish you hadn’t brought that up, Jones,” Coach Williams said during Roy Williams Live. “I am still mad at that. I mean, play the dadgum game. That’s what we have to do. He made a great shot, I was real happy, and then you tell everybody ‘shhh’. Then we get our butts kicked and they’re telling us to ‘shhh’ as we get on the dadgum bus taking our butt out of town.”
The Tar Heels will attempt to rebound from the second loss of the season Wednesday night against MichiganState in East Lansing. Tipoff is 9:00 p.m.; pregame coverage on WCHL begins at 7:30 p.m. with Countdown to Tipoff.http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/williams-still-steaming-james-hushes-uab-crowd/
BIRMINGHAM, AL – One week after erupting for 93 points in an upset win over Louisville, UNC men’s basketball’s offense sputtered in a 63-59 non-conference loss to UAB Sunday at Bartow Arena.
The Tar Heels, who trailed by as many as 15 points in the first half, tried in vain to come back in the second half as Marcus Paige missed a pair of trey attempts in the closing seconds. James Michael McAdoo missed another three-pointer at the buzzer, but needed to make the shot and draw a foul to push the game into overtime anyway.
UAB, 6-2, put a feather in its cap and that of C-USA with the win over the Tar Heels, who came into the game No. 16 in the nation but fell to 4-2.
The Tar Heels, as if weighed down after a holiday feast, turned to famine in the first half in which they hit just 2 of 8 free throws and missed 14 of their first 22 shots from the field. Things were even worse from behind the arc, where the Heels were 0-of-4 in trey attempts.
Forward J.P. Tokoto was a force for the Tar Heels, hitting 7 of 11 shots in finishing with a team-high 16 points. Paige added 13 points as Tokoto’s only teammate to reach double-figures, though he missed all six of his three-point attempts.
McAdoo was another poor-shooting culprit, knocking down just 3 of 13 shots while guard Nate Britt missed all three of his field goal attempts while getting saddled with five fouls.
UNC’s poor stats were about as welcome as a holiday fruit cake as they were outrebounded 52-37, including a 22-11 margin on the offensive glass. Center Fahri Alihodzic dominated in the middle with 13 rebounds for the victors.
The Tar Heels swatted 10 shots, including five in second half, forcing UAB into long scoreless spurts, but Chad Frazier poured in 25 points, including all three of the Blazers’ treys in the big win .
Frazier was terrific all over the court, scoring from long-distance, with shorter jumpers and at the charity stripe.
The Tar Heels suffered a miserable first-half in which they hit just 2 of 8 free throws and missed 14 of their first 22 shots from the field.http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/unc-mens-basketball-comeback-falls-short-uab-63-59/
CHAPEL HILL – UNC Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham says Fetzer Field is Carolina’s athletic facility most in need of upgrades, but money will likely be the deciding factor when it comes down to which programs see improvement first.
“Basketball is such a primary revenue driver for the department, it’s hard to not think about basketball as a way to potentially pay for additional projects,” Cunningham says. “We’re doing them in tandem, but the one I’d like to complete first would be soccer.”
Fetzer Field is the home of the men’s and women’s lacrosse teams, six track programs, and the men’s and women’s soccer teams. The facility was constructed in 1935 and saw renovations in 1988-90.
The women’s soccer team is by far the most successful Division I program as it has won 22 national titles in the sport’s 34-year history. The Tar Heels are one win away from going back to the College Cup in search of defending their national title.
The Dean E. Smith Center opened January 18, 1986 and has since seen two expansions—one in 1992 and another in 2000. Its current capacity is just less than 22,000.
Cunningham says there are still more questions than answers about what to do with the Smith Center: renovate or rebuild.
“When you begin the discussion of enhancing an existing facility—particularly a building that’s almost 30 years old—at some point, the efficiency of renovation is surpassed by a new building,” Cunningham says. “So, I think we need to look at both. It’s just too early to tell which of those potential options becomes more appealing over time.”
In March, Cunningham told WCHL that changes to the UNC basketball facility were years away and that the discussions were just beginning. Not much has changed in the eight months since word first broke that changes were coming. And, he says he wants to take the next 12 months to get the answers to what route UNC Athletics should take.
Many of the lower-level seats are reserved for season ticket holders and lifetime seat holders. Those lifetime seat holders are already major contributors to the athletic department financially and ones that could greatly benefit a new venue. But, are the Dean Dome lifetime seat holders guaranteed seats in a potential new facility?
“It’s a great question,” Cunningham says. “That is something that we have to take a look at: what are the obligations that the institution has to the donors, and what obligation do we have to new donors? So, that becomes a very significant question and challenge that we will hope to get some answers to over the next 12 months.”
If renovations are the plan of attack in the 27-year-old facility, Cunningham says one addition could be to add a type of luxury suite or club box much like the Blue Zone at Kenan Stadium.
“The suite rights for suites and club seats more than pays for the debt service,” Cunningham says. “In fact, it turns a little bit of revenue back to the general fund for the department. So, if we took that model and applied it to basketball, is there a way to create premium seating that would cover the cost of construction and then increase revenue for the department that would help us fund our other sports.”
Cunningham says that would take some revenue away from individual seats, but may offer the option to gain revenue from the space the seats took up by increased value that square footage would then have.
Cunningham says the bottom line is that no decisions are being made right now but that the athletic department is going to make sure that it can continue to recruit top players, coaches, and contributors.
“How do we preserve one of the best basketball programs in the country and put it in a facility that will continue to attract players and coaches,” Cunningham says. “That’s what we’re trying to do. We’re just trying to sort through what is appropriate right now.”http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/gets-upgrades-first-soccer-basketball/
UNCASVILLE, CT – It took more than 15 minutes for the Tar Heels to get going, but the No. 24 UNC men’s basketball team bounced back from it’s first loss of the season with a ten-point win in the semifinal of the Hall of Fame Tipoff Classic against Richmond, 82-72.
The Spiders started hot from behind the arc. Richmond went into the game shooting 19 percent; Saturday the Spiders shot 4-6 in the first 20 minutes.
Richmond jumped out to a nine-point lead at 17-8, but Carolina answered before the mid-way point in the first half with a 9-0 run. The Spiders also owned the backboards with a 10-7 edge in the first half.
The Carolina defense stepped up in the final four-minute segment of the half shutting down the perimeter shooting, and the Tar Heels took their first lead with 37 seconds left until the break. UNC held on and took the 36-33 lead into the locker room.
Carolina never relinquished the lead. Brice Johnson scored a career-high 24 points; Marcus Paige set a new career mark at 26.
Richmond finished the game shooting 32 percent from behind the arc, and Carolina was able to take over the advantage in rebounding, 36-31.
After shooting 22-48 from the free-throw line against Belmot, which cost the Tar Heels their first loss of the season, UNC improved shooting 70 percent, 26-37.
UNC barely edged out Richmond from the field shooting 46 percent compared to 45 percent. The Tar Heels also shot 46 percent from behind the arc as a team.
With the win, the Tar Heels improved to 3-1 and will face the winner of the Louisville, Fairfield Hall of Fame Tipoff semifinal game. Sunday. The Spiders fell to 3-2 and will face the loser in the consolation game. The championship game tips off at 1:00 p.m. and can be heard on 97.9 FM WCHL beginning at 11:30 a.m. with Countdown to Tipoff.http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/mens-basketball-advances-hof-tipoff-championship-82-72/
CHAPEL HILL – High school seniors Joel Berry, Justin Jackson and Theo Pinson signed National Letters of Intent today to attend the University of North Carolina and play men’s basketball beginning in the 2014-15 season.
“We are ecstatic that these three young men and their families have decided to join our basketball family,” says Carolina head coach Roy Williams. “Each of them are talented, come from wonderful families and share a common trait in that they have a tremendous desire for their teams to do well.”
Berry is a 6-1 point guard from Apopka, Fla. He plays for Coach Jason Vallery at Lake Highland Preparatory in Orlando, Fla.
“Joel is an outstanding young man who has been the player of the year in the state of Florida in each of the last two seasons,” says Williams. “He is a true quarterback on the floor, but he has the ability to score as well. He’s a leader and an excellent student. His teammates enjoy playing alongside him.”
Jackson is a 6-8 wing from Tomball, Texas. He plays for Coach Mike Decker for the Homeschool Christian Youth.
“Justin has tremendous ability, but is getting better and better,” says Williams. “He’s 6-8 with perimeter skills. He performed well last summer against tough competition, including at USA Basketball events. He is slender at this point, but will be able to get stronger and can add a great deal to his body. But he has wonderful skills and is a great student.”
Pinson is a 6-6 wing from Greensboro, N.C. He plays for Coach Keith Gatlin at Wesleyan Christian Academy in High Point, N.C.
“Theo’s versatility is a big part of his game,” says Williams. “He can do almost everything on the court and do it well. He can handle the ball, pass, defend and he has tremendous savvy. His family did a great job guiding him through tough competitions with USA Basketball, playing summer basketball and winning state championships. I love his versatility which allows him to play multiple positions, which is something we always like in a player.”http://chapelboro.com/sports/unc-sports/tar-heels-sign-trio-for-2014-15/
CHAPEL HILL– The Carolina basketball regular season tips off tomorrow at 9 p.m. in the DeanSmithCenter with the Oakland Golden Grizzlies serving as the opponent.
Sophomore Marcus Paige appears ready to roll in his second season playing for the Tar Heels. Paige spent the offseason lifting weights to bulk up and improve his physicality on the hardwood.
But Paige says he recognizes the three-point shooting will suffer as long as their sharp-shooters P.J. Hairston and Leslie McDonald remain on the bench. And that’s why he says the Heels must pound inside.
“The more we get to play against other people with our different lineups, will tell us a lot about what works. I think we still need to go inside. We aren’t going to make as many threes with our lineup without P.J. and Leslie, our best shooters. We just have to understand what we do well in this situation until they come back, which should be pounding the ball inside and trying to get on the break,” Paige says.
Paige says if the fine play of freshman Nate Britt continues, it will make his job a whole lot easier on the floor.
“Nate did a great job pushing the ball, finding teammates, and taking care of the ball. That made it easier. I didn’t have to worry about anything from being a primary ball handler and anything like that. As long as he keeps doing a great job, it’s going to make my job at the two a lot easier,” Paige says.
The tendency to just stand around and wait for his shot on the wing is something Paige will have to combat to keep the offense as active as possible.
“It’s hard to switch back and forth. But I need to do a better job of not being so complacent and just standing on the wing. I got to get more involved in the offense. I got to move and set screens. I can’t just stand on the wing and be a spot shooter. I have a tendency to drift into the role when I’m the two, just because I’m not used to being over there. It’s something I’m working on,” Paige says.
The regular season opener for Paige and the rest of the Tar Heels will be broadcast tomorrow night right here on WCHL.
CHAPEL HILL– UNC men’s basketball coach Roy Williams delivered a couple big announcements at Media Day on Thursday. And not surprisingly, they both revolved around the embattled junior guard P.J. Hairston.
Coach Williams says Hairston has earned the opportunity to practice with the team when the Tar Heels open up official practice for the 2013-2014 campaign on Friday. Hairston was suspended on July 28.
Up to this point, Coach Williams says Hairston has complied with all of his demands and that he “has never made the demands on a young man that [he has] made of P.J.”
Coach Williams also says the final decision on how many games Hairston will miss of the regular season will be made before any games are played. He says he just hasn’t made up his mind on the exact length of the suspension.
But it won’t be long now before that decision. The Tar Heels open up their regular season on November 8 against Oakland University.
Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images
DURHAM – Suspended North Carolina guard P.J. Hairston’s court appearance on a speeding charge has been continued until next month.
Hairston was due Friday in a DurhamCounty courtroom. Magistrate Steven R. Storch said his appearance was rescheduled for Sept. 13.
Hairston was cited for speeding May 13 in a vehicle rented under a woman’s name sharing the home address of Haydn Patrick “Fats” Thomas.
Hairston also was arrested June 5 and charged with misdemeanor marijuana possession and driving without a license at a checkpoint in Durham. Thomas’ name appears on the rental records for the car Hairston was driving at the time.
Those charges were dropped last month.
Hairston was suspended indefinitely from the team earlier this week after he was cited again for speeding, this time near Salisbury.http://chapelboro.com/news/unc/hairstons-court-appearance-pushed-to-september/