It seems like Roy Williams began the negativity. It was at the beginning of the season, and especially after every loss, that Williams has tarred UNC’s Tar Heels basketball team with screams, rants and raves that have recently been heard rows around the team. They have to stop. Especially during a win like the one yesterday against East Carolina.
The Tar Heels are doing their best. Yes, they seem to be disjointed. Yes, we can blame all sorts of people. But let’s give some credit. The East Carolina Pirates were ready, mature and with an almost perfect season.
And before you rant about the Tar Heels play against other more mature and talented clubs, treat the Indiana and Butler losses as signs of a weak UNC Tar Heel basketball team, and consider this season lost after a game like this against a team that was 6-1, stop before you speak.
The News & Observer loves to tar the Heels with claims of a victory being a loss. Others question the Tar Heels heart. And Roy claims he has never had a game with no post player getting an offensive rebound.
But luck plays a part too. And apparently ol’ Roy was due.
His team is neither nimble or quick. He requires a better and still better half court. And he needs to ensure assigned defensive positions when the Heels run back on defense.
Finally, does ol’ Roy use what has led John Hollinger to the Grizzlies from ESPN?
Eventually, however, the best information wins. And ultimately, analytics is about providing more and better information to supplement what is already available. Steadily, that realization has taken hold. Not only is it now acceptable to mention things like true shooting percentage in polite conversation, but there’s also been a real quantum shift in front offices like the one I’m about to join.
The information was clear from the first time the Tar Heels played a game against a faster opponent. Take Butler, for example. Somehow, the Tar Heels made the end of the game far better than the beating they actually took.
Yet time and again, the slow, methodical play at center was clear. How do you play a center like Cody Zeller? Not well.
Now that Butler has taken down #1 Indiana, we are left with a few important things to ponder.
Will the Tar Heels end the season with a winning record in the ACC? Probably, but this will remain a question until February.
Will the Tar Heels ever escape the wrath of Roy William? They better, because Roy needs to improve his outlook and view of this team. And a bit of TLC will go a long way with these Heels. In fact, Roy needs to apologize for his actions and statements during and after the game. He has gone too far most of the season. And needs to get with the program and this team.
Will the addition of new players make a difference? You bet. The Heels need to get work from at least ten players for the next few games. And some more mild instruction from Roy Williams for the team on the floor in the given situation.
Who brought you back with Butler? Who played best against Indiana?
Statistics, and more statistics.
Once these are known, make certain you have the best five on the floor for every situation.
And stop railing against this team. It is what it is. Live with it. And believe they are doing their best.