My son had a middle school tournament semi-final Friday, away game. Officials fouled out our best player (African-American) by half-time. When we opened up a 9 point lead in the 3rd quarter, the officials hit us with 9 straight fouls to get to the double bonus, after which the opposing team just drove every possession (did I mention our center had fouled out by half-time?). It was pathetic. And afterwards we all went out and celebrated an awesome team that had an awesome season. What else are you going to do?
Great story - even in middle school, coach here sees value of lost big man in the middle (even highlights support of 74s need to get inner city players).
Everyone’s happy because it was a win, but at its heart, this was a game featuring two second-tier ACC teams slogging it out, and the one who slogged the least won. We have one top-notch player (Paige), one senior who is inconsistent even after 5 years, and the remainder of the team consists of projects (including JMM). This year is about preparing for next year.
Now, if I’m wrong and we finish in the top 3 in the ACC, no one will be happier than me. But if one can watch these games through realistic eyes, one can see that this simply is not a true Carolina-caliber team. This realization does two things: makes watching the games less stressful, and makes missing any given game an easily chosen option.
UNC fans comforted in beating NC State, but recognize the team is 2 or so years away with recruiting cycles - recognize that they beat lower tier teams and knew they would have been blown out by Cuse and Duke - different fan attitude which is surprising as I thought UNC was all about winning now; why not fire their coach for this acceptance of mediocrity?