*Note – If you’re a regular reader, you will most likely pass right by this post as it’s not my “normal stuff”. However I am a diehard Tar Heel fan that is a bit emotional with the disarray that my team has become the last year and a half. My unsettling amount of Duke fan friends will take great delight in this post. One other person might find it while doing a search for Tar Heel images. However I gotta get this off my chest….
Is it overstating tonights matchup, at The Dean Dome, where Clemson has NEVER won, to say that it’s the biggest game ever for North Carolina Basketball as we know it? It might be overstating it, but it’s really not too far off. This program is being held together by a very thin Carolina Blue thread right now. A Hall of fame coach that can’t seem to motivate teams anymore (he says that openly in press conferences), arguably one of the biggest busts in High School recruiting (Harrison Barnes), a team that was in the NIT last year and a fan base that is on the verge of revolt. Yep….tonight is big. REAL big.
I’ve never been a HUGE Roy Williams fan. I wasn’t when he was at Kansas and save for the incredible teams of a few years ago that made his job pretty easy, I haven’t been overly impressed. It pains me to write this, but there’s a guy down the road from Chapel Hill that would be coaching (and winning) differently with this team. No question about it. “Old Roy” is stubborn and that streak in him is colliding with a team that needs leadership, accountability and a swift kick in the Carolina Blue shorts. His system needs to change and adapt to the players he has. What he’s doing…is not working.
A loss tonight, at home, ending the streak for Clemson will set the fan base on fire and put this team on a course for another NIT run. I can’t watch the game because I don’t have Raycom, but tonight needs to prove to the fans that “The Carolina Way” still means something in Chapel Hill. Hustle, effort, precision, excellence. Those are what it means to play basketball for Carolina. You might hate them, but you know I’m right. The last few years those words have become turnovers, lack of effort and underachieving.
The Heels need a win tonight to show themselves and all that follow them that Tyler Hansbrough didn’t take all of the heart out of Carolina when he graduated. It’s been missing ever since. Tonight is a big night. Let’s hope they show up for the game….