UNC vs Davidson

Where: Bobcats Arena, Charlotte, NC
When: Wednesday, November 14th, 7:00 PM

TV: ESPN
Records: UNC 0-0; Davidson 1-0

So it begins.

Not that UNC season openers have been that indicative of the season after it. In 2005 it was Santa Clara who upset the Heels with Raymond Felton out for one game. A 2006 opening win over Gardner-Webb needed a David Noel three with one second left to break a tie and last season UNC went to Charlotte and trailed Winthrop at the half before pulling away late. [Correction: As a reader has pointed out, Winthrop was the second game of the season last year. The first was versus Sacred Heart which UNC won by 22 but only lead by five at half against a NEC team that finished 18-14] So openers have been tough deals in the Roy Williams era and this game is by no means a cakewalk. Davidson is a very good low mid-major team probably as good as Winthrop last year. This basically means that in the first game of the season we will see if the lessons of last season have been adopted.

Questions about defense, perimeter shooting, intensity/focus, killer instinct and putting together a complete effort have been asked repeatedly since the loss versus Georgetown. This game is as good a test as any to see if there are early answers to those questions. Davidson is a well coached team and features guard Stephen Curry, son of former NBA player Dell Curry. If Roy opts to have Wayne Ellington guard Curry it will not only be a good test for the sophomore guard but for the defense in general as they work on the team defense I am convinced was not as strong as it could have been last year.

It will be interesting to see how the offense flows given the lack of good three point shooting through the exhibitions. I am beginning to think that while some perimeter shooting is needed, UNC will simply pound the ball inside until someone decides to do something about. In that respect the offense could be a work in progress early on but I will be anxious to watch how well they execute on the offensive end. I also think it will be extremely important for this team to show that they can come out and play a high level of basketball from the start in part because they really need to exorcise that demons of last season but mainly because Davidson could be a handful if they do not make every effort to handle them early on.

For me this is the most anticipated season opener since 2005 mainly because of the talent and makeup of the team but also because this season is very much about the quest to redeem the end of last season and produce a national championship. And it cannot come quick enough.

I knew I was forgetting something!

UNC 92 Davidson 70

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11 Responses to UNC vs Davidson

  1. […] Wright and Terry? Ty Lawson understands blah blah blah, Bobby is back blah blah blah. Tar Heel Fan has a preview posted. The triangle back where it belongs? I’m guessing Clemson will break it up once again. […]

  2. Josh Bowling says:

    Curious to see how the minutes are spread around. William Graves did not see action in the second preseason game, after playing excellent in the first. Wonder what that was about? If Danny Green and Ellington keep attacking the basket, look out!

  3. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Graves tweaked his ankle in practice so they held him out.

  4. […] Based on recent openers for UNC, will this be another tight game or worse yet, a loss? Too freak out too much Heels fans, in 2005 they lost to Santa Clara and ended up winning the National Championship. […]

  5. Bobby says:

    Winthrop was not the opener last year, Sacred Heart was.

  6. Tar Heel Fan says:

    Thanks..and corrected. I forgot they played Sacred Heart first.

  7. drfranklives says:

    22 points?

    You got any more of what you’re smoking?

  8. Wayne says:

    So, drfranklives, what is YOUR prediction?

  9. Tar Heel Fan says:

    drfrank is a Davidson guy hoping for an upset.

    I had some moments last season where I nailed scores pretty close and usually the predicted score is based on my “gut” feeling at the time. I think it will be close for awhile but UNC will wear them down and pull away.

  10. DeanForever says:

    Riding the Wayne Train…great game for him. This is a great win over a team that may crack the top-25 before the season is over. Tack this one on the ESPN/CBS beloved “body-of-work” screens. The Heels won in a game in which the consistently failed to take advantage of opportunities to build a lead, while commiting an unthinkable 19 turnovers. Nonetheless, 1-0 record and a quality win.

  11. DrFrankLives says:

    we will beat one of the big schools on our schedule. Watch out Coach K, here we come.

    Davidson is 21-8-1 against the spread in its last 30 games. When in doubt, bet the house on the Cats.

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