Maryland 89 UNC 87

I knew it was coming.

When Bobby Frasor missed the layup at the six minute mark a feeling caught me in the pit of my stomach and when it was all said and one UNC blew a 12 point lead over the final six minutes and surrendered that precious one game lead in the ACC standings. And I do not know what to make of this team. They have a penchant for inconsistency and even with the foul situation alongside the rebounding problems UNC was in control of the game before the Terps took over. It is painfully clear they should have finished the job but did not. The four fouls on Lawson were huge and as I pointed out before this team can have real issues with the offense if Lawson is on the bench.  It is not always the case but in matchups with teams like Maryland, his presence is crucial.  When he was out, the Terps made their run and by the time he got back in it was too late.

Now UNC needs help from UVa to hand VT a fifth loss in order to maintain the line on the #1 seed in the ACC. In my opinion the NCAA Tournament seeding is extremely muddled because Wisconsin last twice this week, Florida lost to an LSU team far worse than Maryland, and UNC’s loss is actually not that bad all things considered except it is their 5th loss and right now they probably need to win the next two and the ACC title game to be #1 in the East.

On a side note, let me take a moment to call out those in Tar Heel nation who seem hell bent on selling Roy out for the loss today. The last I checked he was winning 80% of his games and last season took a group of young players who no one thought would make the tournament and put them second in the ACC. Now, this season just because a more talented team has five losses against what everyone has called a more competitive conference some of these folks are ready to throw him under the bus or so it seems. So in respect to these people let me make the following suggestions.

Let’s fire Roy and rehire Matt Doherty. Obviously Roy is not getting it done and his winning percentage plus the national title he won in 2005 are not enough to stave off a rabid ban of morons on keyboard from selling their coach out over a tough loss. So let’s return to the great and wonderful days of 8-20 basketball and forget this guy since he apparently has no idea what he is doing on the bench.

I do not know why UNC is having these lapses but I do know it has less to do with the coaching and more to do with the youth of the team, the parity of ACC basketball, and the simple fact that sometimes you lose these kinds of games. So back off the coach and enjoy the fact that this team is still 24-5 and not worse.

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19 Responses to Maryland 89 UNC 87

  1. actuarializing says:

    Happy birthday anyway.

    Hopefully Va will do our best to keep you in the #1 spot Thursday night!!

  2. tarheels28 says:

    It just might have a tiny bit to do with the officiating also….

  3. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Yeah..

    Fouls: UNC 25 MD 16

    Also the rebounding did not help

    Rebounds: MD 45 UNC 32

    This against a team ranked 8th in the ACC in rebounding margin, a category UNC leads.

  4. Mike White says:

    The UNC defense also allowed Maryland to shoot too well. DJ Strawberry could not be stopped, and he and Mike Jones! Who? Mike Jones! Who? Mike Jones! combined for 20-35 FG.

    Those hypnotic spirals may not have helped either. I think UNC was 4 for 12 on free throws in the second half. I knew it was over the moment Brendan Wright came to the stripe.

    But the real reason Maryland won this game was because they matched up well against the Heels. Were are perhaps the best running team in the country, and the Terps are one of the few teams that can keep up.

  5. C. Michael says:

    I’ve always thought the use of large props by the crowd should be illegal. Jumping and shouting are part of the game, but if you need props to distract the players, you are pretty weak. Then again, most fans idiotically think they have a right to be a part of the action, rather than just an observer.

  6. Dan Schwind says:

    I think the stat of the night was 8-17 vs. 20-26. As in UNC was 8-17 from the free throw line (pathetic) while Maryland was 20-26. Maryland simply took advantage of the free shots it was given, while Brandan Wright (with whom I’ve become increasingly disenchanted) was 0-4 and Tyler was 2-4.

    Also, this is the second time this year I’ve been on hand for a UNC road loss (I was at the State game too) and both times, Carolina kept getting the fans into the game by giving up big plays (Gist’s dunk yesterday and the dunk-o-rama in Raleigh) and the team just fed off that energy.

    I still think this team can do big things in March, if they keep their guard up, which they don’t seem to do against teams they conceive as not being as worthy as they are.

  7. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Looking at the play-by-play sheet you can see during the run where UNC missed shots and got no offensive rebound. The best way to stop the other team from running is to hit a shot here and there to slow them down. UNC has problems running the halfcourt set and ensuring they can get at least something out of it.

  8. Chris says:

    The 10-12 man revolving door playing system has produced reasonably good results this year, given the over all raw talent of the team. It would be interesting to see how tightening up the lineup to about 8 players would work. Consistency, knowing the ten-
    dencies of your teammates on the floor better, might work better than the idea that we’ll play everybody and wear the other team down. We also need Felton back.

  9. C. Michael says:

    How does UNC drop 3 spots while Florida only drops one?

  10. Tar Heel Fan says:

    The polls are illogical.

    Maryland is ranked 23rd in one and in the AP they are the third in the receiving votes section behind Winthrop who they beat.

    Vanderbilt is ranked 19th and 23rd with losses to Wake Forest and Furman and even though they lost to Mississippi State last week(a team Winthrop beat).

    Air Force remains ranked despite losses in their horrid conference and a loss to Duke.

    Memphis is ranked ahead of UNC despite playing in a glorified high school conference.

    The five losses is what pushes them down. Everyone ahead of them has four or less.

  11. MDTarheel says:

    This lost really hurts and makes me wonder how well this team will do in the NCAAs. UNC had this team beat. The guards are killing us with their lack of defense and their inability to drive and score or dish to the big men. UNC show have attached the ball inside all night long. Any team that has good guard play and can make the heels play a slow tempo offense can beat this team.

  12. thesportsidiot says:

    “Let’s fire Roy and rehire Matt Doherty.”

    Uh oh. Are UNC fans starting to sound like Pack fans? I jest, I jest!

    UNC will be fine. Keep in mind the youth that is on the floor, Psycho T excluded (old man!). Roy is trying to round them into shape not only for the tourney, but for next year when they should be in the top 3 nationally all year. Don’t overreact to a few conference losses in a revamped ACC.

    Roy had just better make sure his boys aren’t caught looking ahead to Sunday. Who do they play this week?

  13. Dr. Seuss says:

    After the now infamous shot clock error at Duke, Clemson Coach Oliver Purnell declined to appeal the loss, but rather used it as an opportunity to show his team that life is not always fair and that you have to overcome adversity in order to ultimatley be successful. With this in mind, would my fellow Tarheel fan’s PLEASE STOP COMPLAINING ABOUT FOULS!!! We did not lose that game because of officiating. We lost the game because this team does not SEEM to have heart.

    And as far as anyone questioning Coach Williams’ competence, perhaps you should lay off the crack pipe. The only thing I would note, and Coach Williams may be thinking this as well, are the qualities that he looks for while recruiting players. Perhaps players that give the most effort are more beneficial that players with more talent. I am very, very disapointed in this team right now. The reason they fell farther in the polls than Florida is because they should have. Hell they maybe even should have fallen all the way down to 10. Yes Florida’s losses were to lesser teams, however they were not nearly as big of games. The loss to Va Tech (a football school mind you.. jk) was on our home floor in a match up of two of the best teams in the best conference only a few weeks prior to tournament time. This is the type of game a Championship caliber team is hell bent on winning. So Florida losses to LSU, big deal. Our losses to Va Tech and Maryland were tournament style games with huge consequences for winning or losing. That (along with a 4-3 record in our last seven games) is why we fell to 8. You would think that the celebration with the 57 and 82 Championship teams would have provided this team with all of the inspiration they could possibly need to play with all the passion in the world for the rest of this season and next. Well apparently in didn’t. Apparently this team does not appreciate the tradition that is Carolina Basketball. Perhaps they just like the way they look in the Carolina Blue uniforms. Maybe Roy too is thinking that perhaps if he should rethink anything, is that the criteria for his recruiting focus more on the level of character as opposed to the level of talent of his recruits…

    Now, after ranting, let me say that I do really like the large majority of this team. I guess that is why I am EXTREMELY disappointed in them right now and how they are representing Coach Williams and the UNC Basketball program. Perhaps they are more concerned with going to the NBA than doing right by Roy and UNC. Or perhaps they are just very slow learners. Perhaps they will have plenty of time to think about it when their season ends a little sooner than expected…

  14. Mike White says:

    Dr. Seuss:

    Cut these guys some slack. Our freshmen in 05-06 had such an insane learning curve that we may have created unrealistic expectations for the learning curve of this tear’s team. The truth is, last year’s team was such an rare anomaly that we may never see again. Appreciate how good that team was mentally and allow this team to grow, I expect UNC to do well in March.

    Having said that, I was expecting more from perhaps the most talented team in the nation than to be 24-5, 10-4 in conference and in a four horse race with Virginia, Virginia Tech, and Boston College. Right now, this team is better than they play.

  15. Dan Schwind says:

    Can I just say that the only thing less bareable than being a UNC fan around State fans after losing to State, is being a UNC fan in Maryland after losing to the Twerps? I’m actually becoming torn as to who I’ll cheer for when they play each other Saturday. I’m starting to hate Maryland that much.

  16. Greg Melvin says:

    In response to “Let’s fire Roy and rehire Matt Doherty”: I don’t believe any true Tar Heel fan endorses that position. However, in the interest of fairness where Doherty is concerned, let’s consider the following points: (1) Yes, there was the disastrous 8-20 season, but some of the blame can be attributed to Bill Guthridge, who did such an abysmal job of recruiting during his final season. I’m sorry, but Adam Boone and Brian Morrison paled in comparison to previous McDonald’s All-American players who enrolled at UNC. (2) Many, many people fail to remember or simply ignore the fact that it was Doherty who recruited May, McCants, and Felton. I doubt seriously that the Heels would have won the 2005 NCAA Championship without those three.

    On to the 2006-2007 edition of the Tar Heels: all in all, Roy Williams has done a very good job of coaching. He can teach the fundamentals of basketball and advise on game strategy, but he can not impart mental fortitude to the players. That self-motivation must come from within.

  17. williamodouglas says:

    Carolina is still number one in the Pomeroy and USA Today rankings and third in the RPI. Ultimately, all the matters is winning 6 in a row in March and April, on neutral courts, I repeat, neutral courts.

    Don’t get too riled up about Maryland because I don’t remember them playing in Chapel Hill this year. VPI can brag a little, but Maryland cannot, due to the elimination of the round robin in the conference.

    I think that Deon Thompson is going to have to get more work. He is a good free throw shooter and Wright is just too much of a liability to have on the floor at the end of games.

  18. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Greg,

    A bit of hyperbole on my part mainly because I was reading the message boards post game and there were multiple “Roy screwed up” threads going and even one that suggested Gary Williams was a better bench coach than Roy was. I just got a little fed up with some of our fellow Heels jumping off the cliff when a bad loss crops up.

  19. Josh Bowling says:

    I recall the measure of support “Coach K” received in his 95-96 season. I do not recall many asking for his slip of resignation. I view Roy as in the Coach K/Dean Smith league. We need to be a family that supports one another in tough times. That kinda of character will be desired by many high schoolers looking to go to a university that they can be a part of. Nobody wants to play for a university in dissaray and talk of criticism towards the coach. It should always be echoed aloud across this land that we are the University of North Carolina, and we are an indestructible family, and you will have to continue to deal with us for years to come.

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