Tar Heel Post
The last two season have been, well, not what is expected of UNC basketball. Tar Heel basketball is about being atop the ACC and college basketball. It is about National Championships and Players of the Year. It is about Dean Smith and Michael Jordan.

Sure, UNC basketball fans are used to winning and demand it, but how soon we forget how great the not-so-distant past was. 

Just because the last two season have not gone according to plan ( and this season has a lot more history to write) does not all-of-a-sudden mean that UNC basketball has reached rock bottom or that Roy Williams is a bad coach. We hear that last one a lot after every UNC loss. 

But how soon we forget just how good that 2009 team was and how good of a coach Roy Williams was that year. Sure, UNC had as much talent as any coach could ask for, but do not forget that Ol' Roy was the one who brought that talent in. Do not forget all of the headaches Roy had to endure with that team to make sure everything came together for a brilliant National Championship run.

Let me remind you of some of those headaches. First, he had to wait and see if Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington, and Danny Green would test the draft waters or come back to school. They opted for school. He also had an instance of Ty Lawson getting caught intoxicated while driving a car, and on top of that he was underage. Good Ol' Roy had to deal with serious injuries to Marcus Ginyard and and Tyler Zeller. To top it all off his floor general and ACC Player of the Year had an injured toe at year's end and was not even able to play in the ACC Tournament.

Yes, Roy Williams had his headaches with this team, but found a way to bring the team together by winning a National Championship. Roy will be back with a team that can compete for National Championships. He will hit the recruiting trail and coach the players he currently has. 

Recently, I have criticized Roy for some of his coaching, but I failed to remember how good he really is at what he does. He knows how the game is played, and will find a way through these "migraines" he is currently facing. 

Tar Heel fans: do not forget what Roy Williams has brought to this university, nor what 2009 meant to all of us.
The Tar Heels are coming off of an exhilarating and tough win against Miami in Coral Gables. Harrison Barnes provided the heroics with a game winning jumper as the shot clock expired with six seconds left on the clock. Clutch!

Now the Heels must ride that momentum back home to Chapel Hill to face rival NC State (12-8, 2-4 ACC). The Wolfpack have had a disappointed season which was brought to fruition with a loss to Clemson after the Pack had a 19 point lead. Sidney Lowe's is definitely sitting on the proverbial "hot-seat" and is quite possibly a "lame-duck." 

The keys to winning this game if you are the Heels is to limit the production of Tracy Smith, who recently returned from knee surgery, and not to allow L.J. Leslie to have a career game. Leslie has recently been removed from the starting lineup, but has the talent to have a big game.

Also of importance will be freshman point guard Kendall Marshall against freshman point guard Ryan Harrow. Both have recently played themselves into the starting lineup, and Marshall needs to control the game more than Harrow for UNC to be given the best opportunity to win.

Finally, UNC has typically allowed other teams to shoot the three very well this season, and they must limit Scott Wood who is a very efficient three-point shooter for State. 

Neither UNC or NC State are the powerhouses that Tobacco Road is accustomed to, but UNC should certainly win this ball game. 

This game has equal importance to the football team. Not only will the 2010 football team be honored at halftime, but several marquee football recruits will be in town. A good show at the basketball game would go a long ways in making these players Tar Heels.

At any rate, this Tobacco Road match-up should be a very interesting game to watch in Chapel Hill tomorrow. Tip-off is slated for 2:00 and can be viewed on ESPN.

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    My name is Justin Crawford and in this space I will keep you up with the latest news in the ACC. Thanks for reading!


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