While the summer is anything but quiet in the world of college athletics, it’s often a dead time for fans. Games are over, recruiting is slow and summer workouts have begun. So if you’re only a fan of your favorite team, life can be hard during the warmer months. But don’t worry, things aren’t all bad! The NBA is holding its draft this week, which is always of special interest to ACC fans. This year, notable entries include players from North Carolina, Duke, Syracuse, NC State, Clemson, Louisville and Virginia. It’s an exciting time for many different people. Players finally reach their dreams. Lifelong fans burst with pride and optimism. And schools bask in the reflected glory of their latest millionaires.
It’s the story that just won’t die. The North Carolina academic scandal came to the forefront of everyone’s minds once again today when ESPN revealed their new ‘Outside the Lines’ segment with former UNC shooting guard Rashad McCants, the second leading scorer of the 2004-2005 NCAA Championship team. In the interview, McCants claimed, in short, that he didn’t go to class, didn’t do any work and that the administration and Coach Roy Williams knew what was going on. Because the school has been in the media so much over the past few years for similar claims regarding the football team, the issue is that much more magnified. Especially since a championship and a historic program is involved. The interesting thing though, is that this statement strongly conflicts with one he made ten years ago (ESPN).
After weeks of speculation, and an early leak by ESPN’s Brett McMurphy, the ACC has unveiled their new branding today. The news release and announcement can be seen here-
Following in the footsteps of the Worldwide Leader, the Confidential thought it would be fun to go ahead and try to project next year’s ACC Men’s Basketball standings. As is always the case, it’s nearly impossible to predict what will happen. Injuries occur, players don’t live up to expectations, teams over perform, but it’s a fun exercise regardless. After all, where else can you be so consistently wrong and still have people follow your every word? You know, besides meteorology.
You may not know it, but one of the biggest days in college football history is quickly approaching. No, not the spring signing period, although that was pretty exciting. No, not the inaugural College Football Playoff either, that’s practically a whole year away. Imagine something greater. Something more far-reaching. That’s next Friday.
When news broke yesterday that junior forward James Michael McAdoo was forgoing his final season of eligibility and declaring for the NBA Draft, there was a lot of anger and confusion among North Carolina fans. Why now? Why not return for one more year? It seemed obvious on the surface. He’s not projected to be a first round pick in most mock drafts, so why leave when he could stay and improve his chances? It’s easy for fans to say that because they’re not in his shoes, but things are never that simple. Even though his decision could be viewed as impulsive and ill advised, that doesn’t mean that it actually is. Here are a few of the reasons why McAdoo might not be returning next season-
Another North Carolina Basketball season has come and gone. 24 wins. A Hall of Fame Tipoff Tournament Championship. And for the first time ever, a Roy Williams coached Carolina team is back at home after the Round of 32 for two years in a row. For many fans, it’s been an interesting, yet unsatisfying, season. Summer drama led to early season losses. Disappointing outcomes led to surprising upsets. Big victories led to an almost unprecedented poor start in conference play. A wake up call led to a huge win streak. And the season ended early, yet again, in the most bizarre of circumstances. As we reflect on the 2013-2014 North Carolina basketball team and look to the future, here are a few observations from this year’s season-
Let’s go ahead and get the most obvious thing out of the way. No, North Carolina is not a favorite to make the Final Four. But could they get there? Absolutely. They have all the talent and tools to make a deep March run- defensive intensity, a wide rebounding margin, a star point guard, excellent bench play. Add a Hall of Fame coach to that list and you’ve got a pretty sure shot, right? The problem is, that the Tar Heels rarely exhibit all of these qualities at one time. This is the same team that lost to UAB (which finished with a losing record in lowly C-USA) and beat then #1 Michigan State (many media member’s pick to win it all) in the same WEEK. You never know what you’re going to get when they step on the court. A 12-game winning streak just became a 2-game losing streak courtesy of Duke and Pittsburgh, two teams which North Carolina had already beaten earlier in the season. So why do I think they still have a chance?
Because the Tar Heels always seem to show up when it matters most.
As the final week of the regular season comes to a close, it’s time to return to our Tar Heel Panic-o-Meter one last time. When we last visited this concept back in early December, Carolina had an acceptable 4-2 record, with puzzling losses to Belmont and UAB. Inconsistency was the rule, not the exception, and wins at then #1 Michigan State and #11 Kentucky led to an 0-3 start in ACC play.
But a lot has changed since then- this isn’t the same team.
It’s basketball season in ACC country, and things are better than ever. Four teams are ranked in the AP poll (#4 Syracuse, #6 Duke, #12 Virginia, and #19 North Carolina), and the league is coming off of one of its most exciting weeks ever. An unexpected roadblock in Syracuse’s quest for dominance has sent them reeling, while the Duke-North Carolina game was, well…Duke and North Carolina. An instant classic. So naturally, the league is doing everything it can to seize this media momentum by calling a press conference today to talk about…football.