Tag:Roy Williams
Posted on: February 11, 2012 6:30 pm
Edited on: February 11, 2012 7:02 pm

Offended by Roy's suicide story? Not me

Williams and the Tar Heels bounced back with a win over Virginia Saturday afternoon. (Getty Images)

By Gary Parrish

The North Carolina Tar Heels cruised Saturday to a 70-52 victory over Virginia that helped put behind them Wednesday's crushing loss to Duke, you know, that loss in which Tyler Zeller missed free throws, scored on his own team and let Austin Rivers bury a jumper at the buzzer.

This win over Virginia was good.

But that loss to Duke was really bad.

It was so bad Roy Williams was asked Saturday how Zeller handled it.

A portion of the coach's answer quickly made its way around Twitter and other social media sites.

"We had a chance to visit and [Zeller] said I was one of the few guys who could make him laugh," Williams said, according to an audio clip provided to CBSSports.com by Inside Carolina's Dijana Kunovac. "I asked him Thursday night when I called him late, I said 'Are you thinking about getting the knives out and slicing your wrist?' He said 'Maybe.' I said, 'Well if you're gonna do that then call me and I'll come do it with you.' I told him my son would want to know it first so he could change the will and get control of everything. He liked that statement, too."

Roy Williams slicing wrist audio

But some fans didn't like that statement at all. To them, this was good 'ol Roy -- the same coach who once compared a losing streak to the earthquake in Haiti -- sticking his big 'ol foot in his big 'ol mouth, but I can't be outraged. And those of you who are probably need to relax a little.

I mean, the man was just joking.

Have we really reached the point where jokes aren't allowed?

All I ever hear are people bemoaning the idea that our sports lack real characters. We say we hate coachspeak then attack those who try not to deliver it, and that seems dumb. So let the record show that I have no issue with Williams' story ... and, yes, I realize suicide is a serious issue.

I've had friends commit suicide.

I've had friends survive suicide attempts.

Guns. Pills. Razors-to-wrists. We all have stories.

Suicide is a very serious and sad thing. I can't imagine what it must be like to reach a point where ending your life seems like a better option than continuing it. But trainwrecks are serious, too. And people have died that way, too. And yet I sat at the KFC Yum! Center last Monday watching Louisville dismantle Connecticut while folks publicly described the Huskies as a "trainwreck," and I don't remember anybody reminding the world that it's not funny to joke about trainwrecks. Because it's just a term we use to make a point. Everybody basically understands this. It's fine.

Raise your hand if you've never joked around and said the words, "Man, I'd rather die than do that."

Raise your hand if you've never shaped your fingers like a gun and pointed them at yourself.

Raise your hand if you've never typed the letters KYS.

My guess is that most reading this have done at least one of those things, and I bet most didn't mean any of it literally. You don't really mean you'd rather die than eat black olives, you wouldn't really put your finger under your chin if it were a loaded gun, and you don't really want a Facebook friend to kill himself. Those are just expressions designed to make points, and that's all Williams was trying to do Saturday. He was just trying to make a point about how devastating that loss to Duke was to he and Zeller and UNC in general, and I thought he made the point rather well.
Posted on: February 8, 2012 11:42 pm
Edited on: February 8, 2012 11:50 pm

Somehow Duke just won a game that seemed lost

By Gary Parrish

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- I had a bunch of words written and ready to post 25 minutes go.

Then North Carolina stopped scoring.

And Duke kept making shots.

And then Austin Rivers, with his Blue Devils somehow down by just two after trailing by double-digits for most of the second half, pulled from 25 feet on the right wing and buried a game-winning jumper at the buzzer that will never be forgotten around these parts. So now the scoreboard reads Duke 85, North Carolina 84, and that's the final. And now this building is quiet. And people are stunned. And I don't believe I've ever seen anything quite like what I just saw here at the Dean Smith Center.

"See y'all," Rivers yelled to the North Carolina students as he jogged off the court.

"[Expletive] you!" one student yelled back.

And, yeah, this Duke-UNC rivalry is as intense as ever.

"I've never seen anything like that," said UNC coach Roy Williams. "But this is North Carolina and Duke."

The game seemed over about an hour ago.

If you watched it, you know that.

Harrison Barnes was rolling, Tyler Zeller was overshadowing both Plumlee brothers, and John Henson looked like he might get 20 rebounds. The fifth-ranked Tar Heels were up 13 on their homecourt. I didn't see any reason to wait around before I started typing. So I started typing. I typed a bunch of words. And then North Carolina stopped scoring. And Duke kept making shots. And then Rivers buried a winning jumper that will never be forgotten around these parts, and I don't believe I've ever seen anything quite like what I just saw.
Posted on: January 23, 2012 12:39 pm
Edited on: January 23, 2012 12:57 pm

North Carolina's new backup point: Stilman White

By Jeff Goodman

Stilman White. 

Yes, Stilman White. That's who Roy Williams will give first crack at getting Dexter Strickland's minutes as Kendall Marshall's backup point guard. 

Strickland tore his ACL last week and is done for the season -- which essentially means that the Tar Heels don't have a backup point guard. This could be critical at some point in the NCAA tournament if the Tar Heels -- the preseason favorites -- are to cut down the nets in New Orleans. 

"We're going to try and give Stilman time there," Williams said on Monday. "We'll see how that works out." 

White is a mid-major recruit from Wilmington, N.C., that has logged a grand total of 65 minutes thus far in his UNC career. 

Losing Strickand is costly in two primary areas: He's the team's top perimeter defender and also only legit backup floor leader. Williams said he'll move Reggie Bullock into the starting lineup in place of Strickland, which should help offensively -- especially in terms of spacing. 

"Reggie deserves it," Williams said.

However, while Bullock has improved significantly on the defensive end, he's still no Strickland. Williams said that Strickland averaged about three minutes per half in spelling Marshall at the point.  

The alternative isn't pretty: It's Harrison Barnes, Bullock or P.J. Hairston. 

"It's a big-time loss," Williams said of losing Strickland. 

One that isn't getting nearly enough attention. 

Posted on: November 29, 2011 12:05 pm
Edited on: November 29, 2011 12:10 pm

Roy Williams angry at UNC fans ... again


By Matt Norlander

Ol' Roy's frustrated with the Tar Heel fan base again.

This happens from time to time. In fact, a simple Google search of "Roy Williams angry at Heels fans" brings up instances in the past when the man's gone after his fan base. But when you've won two national titles at your alma mater, you've got the slack to be honest with your feelings. Too many coaches are afraid to challenge their fan base; Williams can be a phony in some areas, but in this one he's not, and I love that about him. The man has emotions and he gets his feelings hurt and he's going to tell you about it. There aren't three other head coaches in college basketball like that.

The latest fan base frustration Williams has stems from Saturday night, when his top-ranked Heels fell to UNLV in Vegas. Apparently the team lacked the comfort of having a few rows of Carolina Blue supporters behind the team bench. A few dozen seats for road games are normally reserved for UNC fans, usually by boosters who have the cash to front those kind of ducats.

But the team didn't have its usual rah-rah'ing behind the baseline Saturday night. Evil UNLV fans infiltrated the system! And so Williams is now ticked.

On his radio show Monday, he went after anyone who sold their seats, alienating the unknown in the process.

ESPN.com's Robbi Pickeral writes:
“For some of our fans to … get tickets through the Rams Club, and sell their tickets to UNLV boosters that are sitting right behind our families, I don’t like that,’’ he said. “And if the shoe fits, wear it. I don’t care who it is, and I’ll tell the sucker face-to-face: I do not like that, will not like that, don’t ever forget it. I’m trying to find out who it was.”

According to Williams, there was a UNLV fan sitting next to one of the Tar Heel coaches’ wives who was being so negative toward the team that his usually-non-confrontational high school coach turned around and said something to that fan. ... Williams has long been sensitive to who's sitting behind his bench; a couple years back, he was accused of having a Presbyterian College fan thrown out of the Smith Center after that fan was screaming for a UNC player at the free throw line to miss it; Williams insists he never asked for that fan to be escorted out, only to find out if the man had tickets for that section.

But to the people who sold those tickets: “If you sell our tickets, your tickets that you get to the Rams Club to somebody else, and they come in cheering for UNLV, I’ve got no use for you,’’ Williams said. “And that’s as blunt as I can put it.”

He later added: “People have a right -- but not our people. You’re either with me, or you’re not. There’s no middle ground.”
There's plenty of schadenfreude to go around here, as enemy fans of UNC will get plenty of glee from Williams getting his undies in a knot over not having his little space perfect during a road game. The funny thing -- yes, this story is funny -- is, Williams is going up against a faceless enemy. In tough times, you can't stop people from selling their seats. Just how it is.

Carolina's next road game is Saturday at Kentucky. There's going to be plenty of blue behind UNC's bench their, too -- just no telling which shade it will be.

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: November 12, 2011 11:43 am
Edited on: November 12, 2011 12:32 pm

It's (past) time to ban midcourt logos

By Gary Parrish

CORONADO, Calif. -- The logos college basketball events put at midcourt are dangerous.

Don't believe me, ask Roy Williams.

"Let's stop putting those stupid logos on the floor where kids slip and slide around," Williams said. "Somebody is going to get hurt, and I've said that for years and years and years."

The North Carolina coach has indeed said that for years and years and years -- proof being that the above quote isn't from Friday night's Carrier Classic. That's actually a quote I found from 2008, a quote Williams delivered after two Tar Heels (Marcus Ginyard and Tyler Hansbrough) slipped on a midcourt logo during a game in Raleigh.

So coaches have literally been fighting this fight for years and years and years.

And yet nothing changes.

There was still a big logo at midcourt for the Carrier Classic ... and it nearly cost Michigan State's Branden Dawson. The 6-foot-6 freshman slipped on the logo while running and twisted his knee. Yes, he later returned. But it looked bad. And it could've been bad. And it's not something the NCAA should allow to continue.

"We've got to get rid of those logos in the middle of the court," Michigan State's Tom Izzo said late Friday. "We can put logos other places. I'll wear logos to support the people who sponsor us. They can paint me. But we have to get rid of the logos for the safety of the players."

Photo: AP
Posted on: May 19, 2011 9:59 am
Edited on: May 19, 2011 10:09 am

Is Roy Williams afraid to play in Madison?

"We don't need no stinking Badgers," Roy Williams never said.

Posted by Eric Angevine

When the ACC/Big Ten matchups came out, the announcement stuck in one man's craw. Wedged itself in there sideways, apparently.

Not that having a glottal obstruction stopped former Wisconsin AD Pat Richter from speaking. Oh no, he spoke.

Annoyed that the game between Wisconsin and UNC will not be played in Madison, Richter told WTLX-FM exactly what he thinks of Carolina's head coach. "I know darn well that you'll never get Roy Williams here. He won't come to Wisconsin; he's afraid the people are going to boo him and everything else. I think that's all bogus," Richter said.

Website Madison.com further expounded on Richter's agita:

In comments taped for his weekly radio show on WTLX-FM/100.5 and made public in advance of air time, Richter takes the Challenge's scheduling process to task. And he asserts that Williams, who remains an unpopular character locally a decade after ripping the Badgers' style of play in their 2000 Final Four appearance, "won't come to Madison" and ensures that aim by unduly influencing the decision-makers at ESPN and the respective conferences.

Richter notes that after the UW-UNC matchup was bypassed in the first 12 editions of the Challenge, it finally comes to pass at a time when a loaded North Carolina team will open the season in the Top 5.

If Williams is concerned about the possibility of being booed, he is right to be. His comments about the slow-down style preferred by the Badgers in 2000 have stayed under the skin of several Wisconsinites. Williams was booed in 2002 when Kansas played at the Kohl Center for the Midwest Regional. That wasn't even a direct matchup of the two teams.

Big-time basketball coaches know how to showcase their teams. Whether Williams was able to turn things his way or not, that's the way it looks to fans in Madison. Ol' Roy's going to take some heat, whether he likes it or not.

The trick, for the UNC athletic department, is going to be keeping Williams from firing back. The UNC coach has a reputation for being thin-skinned and publicly combative with those who say things he doesn't like to hear. There may yet be more fireworks in the offing.

Photo: US Presswire
Posted on: February 7, 2011 10:19 am
Edited on: February 7, 2011 10:20 am

Coach Speak: Hot seats come in pairs

Posted by Eric Angevine

Hot Seat

Today, I’m going to single out two coaches from each of the Power Six conferences who are likely on their way out after the season. Before I do that, I want to congratulate the nation’s Athletic Directors for not firing anybody mid-season this year. After watching programs like DePaul and UNC-Wilmington struggle to find new leaders after firing coaches in January, perhaps the notion that it’s better to finish the season before handling your business is taking root again.

Arkansas coach John Pelphrey grimaces as his chair heats up.Now, on to our Power Six Pink Slip Pairings:

ACC: NC State’s Sidney Lowe (2-7 in conference) and Georgia Tech’s Paul Hewitt (3-6)

Big Ten: Michigan’s John Beilein (4-7) and Penn State’s Ed DeChellis (5-6)

Big 12: Texas Tech’s Pat Knight (3-6) and Nebraska’s Doc Sadler (3-5)

Big East: Providence’s Keno Davis (3-8) and South Florida’s Stan Heath (2-9)

Pac-10: Oregon State’s Craig Robinson (4-7) and Arizona State’s Herb Sendek (1-10)

SEC: Arkansas’ John Pelphrey (right, 4-5) and LSU’s Trent Johnson (2-6)

Not all of these men will be fired, but you can bet each has a sizable contingent of fans who would pay good money for a firecoachx.com domain name right about now. A couple of honorable mentions go to Oklahoma’s Jeff Capel and Miami’s Frank Haith. Both coaches have let promising programs slide, but each is overshadowed by more deserving colleagues in his own conference.

To my mind, the least likely pair to fall is the Beilein/DeChellis double bill in the Big Ten. Their relatively strong records show just how tough the league is from top to bottom. The most likely is the Lowe/Hewitt duo in the ACC – both coaches have had ample time and talent to build winning programs and haven’t come through.

Quotable Coaches 

My parents station wagon in 1982 had a better sound system than what they're using at the Superbowl. What's going on???”

 -Xavier’s Chris Mack (@CoachChrisMack) joins the Twitter takedown of SB halftime show

“No idea.”

-Roy Williams gives rare insight into his thoughts on how to prepare UNC for Wednesday's visit to Duke

“We still feel he’s not going to play and we have to go forward with that. Just because you’re out of a cast, you have to be 100 percent before you come back, and he’s a ways from that. It’s progressing well for his career. It’s being done the right way and he’s got to be honest with us about how he’s doing.”

-Mike Krzyzewski tempers expectations for Kyrie Irving’s toe sans cast

"The court's the same length, the basket's the same height, and they put the same amount of air in the ball. I don't give any lip service to changing how we do things because we're playing on the road. We do what we do and it's either good enough or it's not."

-Auburn coach Tony Barbee channels ‘Hoosiers’ after a road loss at Georgia

“Sorry Vol Nation I tried my best. I'm so disappointed right now. The future is bright. Te Amo Mucho. Si.”

-UT temp head coach Tony Jones (@TjonesLive) apologizes as his fill-in stint for Bruce Pearl ends in a loss

"We've played three times on (national TV) and stunk."

-Cleveland State head coach Gary Waters following a 73-61 setback to floundering league foe Butler

“If Ohio State needs motivation... All they need is to watch ESPN's montage..of Talking heads saying..They will lose to Wisconsin... tonight.”

-Ohio State assistant Jeff Boals (@JeffBoals) plays the ‘no respect’ card on an undefeated team via Twitter

Speaking of Wisconsin, here’s OSU’s next – and possibly most dangerous – opponent, Bo Ryan, talking about his team’s on-court destruction of Michigan State:
Posted on: February 6, 2011 4:12 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2011 4:13 pm

Larry Drew who?

Dexter Strickland and Harrison Barnes have UNC humming

Posted by Eric Angevine

I hope Larry Drew isn't holding his breath, waiting for UNC to fall apart without him.

He'll turn blue waiting for anyone to regret these numbers: 89, 69, 16, 3, 3.

The first number is UNC's points scored, the second belongs to Florida State. The next three represent freshman point guard Kendall Marshall's assists, turnovers and steals.

Thanks to Marshall's largesse, the numbers were healthy all around. John Henson had 16 points and 11 boards. Harrison Barnes 17 and 9. Ty Zeller scored 16 and Dexter Strickland had 15.

Despite all the drama surrounding his lineup changes and the sudden departure of Drew, Roy Williams has his Tar Heels right where he wants them at this time of year - contending for the ACC lead.

Heading into Wednesday's trip to Cameron Indoor Stadium, UNC is right behind the Duke Blue Devils in ACC play at 7-1. Marshall, whose elevation to the starting lineup seems to have catalyzed Drew's decision to leave, had a school-record-setting passing performance against the same tough Florida State defense that humbled Duke on January 12.

His fellow freshman, Barnes, played with a hard-won sense of poise that allowed him to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous message-board fans long enough to become a valuable part of the Tar Heel offense. Where some other athletes might have crumbled under the pressure (perhaps Drew did?), Barnes displayed mental toughness in working toward being the player he wants to be, rather than the player the nation's fans and pundits want him to be.

Today's result -- indeed, the results of the past two weeks -- prove that Drew's departure was a matter of addition by way of subtraction. With Dexter Strickland, Kendall Marshall and Reggie Bullock running the floor with big men Barnes, Ty Zeller and John Henson, every Florida State miss became a race to the opposite end of the floor. Forced to react on the fly rather than establish a half-court bulwark, the Seminoles were caught flat-footed far too often. Even when FSU had defenders in place, Marshall's passing was crisp and heady enough to result in points anyway. This looked a lot more like the Carolina teams we've seen in the past.

The Heels can't expect the Devils to give them as many opportunities to start the break with defensive rebounds, but they've found their mojo just in time to make the upcoming Wednesday matchup the most intriguing game in the country again. That's good for both teams, good for the ACC, and good for college basketball.
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com