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  • shwineka 11:02 am on November 10, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Belmont Abbey, , , , , , , , , , , , turnovers, , , ,   

    Takeaways from UNC Season Opener vs. FIU 

    UNC 88, FIU 72


    Box Score

    While last night’s game was not absurdly impressive, Carolina looked good considering how much practice they’ve had. On that note, though, it appears that the team is still very rusty. They did not finish well around the rim. I recall one sequence when Ed Davis and Deon Thompson combined to get two offensive rebounds and miss two layups.  UNC’s sheer size advantage was the story of the game. The team shot a ridiculous 55.7 percent from the field — lots of dunks. The three-pointers, however, were noticeably lacking. For a more balanced team, the Heels are going to need someone to step up their shooting

    Could that person be Marcus Ginyard? Ginyard showed some stroke last night, going 2-4 from beyond the arc. He also hit a long two, in which I believe he thought he was taking a three. Roy Williams might be expecting Ginyard to perform a little better from downtown, too, starting him at shooting guard and Will Graves at small forward. One thing is certain, if Marcus becomes a reliable threat from three, UNC would instantly be more dangerous and more difficult to beat.

    As expected, Ed Davis was stellar.

    But, as was evident in the Belmont Abbey scrimmage, the turnovers are the biggest concern. Had the Heels not turned the ball over 26 times (eighth most in school history and tied for most under Roy ever) this game would have been an even bigger blowout. The good news? Larry Drew II only had two of those 26. The bad news? His backup, Dexter Strickland, had five.


    1. Most Improved Shot: Marcus Ginyard
    2. Play of the Game: Tie between Justin Watts’ alley oop to John Henson and Will Graves’ steal into Ginyard dunk (both on video above)
    3. The Danny Green Award: Ed Davis – 13 pts., 11 rebs., 4 blocks, 2 Asts
    4. The Tyler Hansbrough Award: Deon Thompson – 20 pts., 10 rebs. (6 offensive)
  • shwineka 12:41 pm on November 9, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Belmont Abbey, , , , , Golden Panthers, Isiah Thomas, , , season opener, , , ,   

    UNC Basketball Season Opener: Florida International 


    It’s heeeerrrrrrrree.

    Time to tell all your football friends “Goodbye.” Time to say, “Hey, I’d love to stay at work a little longer tonight, but really, I can’t. It’s a 7 o’clock tip-off.” Time to jump around. Time to strategically wear Carolina blue clothing items on gamedays. Yes, ladies and gentlmen, it’s college basketball season.

    The Heels take on Florida International tonight, though if Golden Panthers coach Isiah Thomas had his way, FIU would be playing Ohio State. As season openers go, the whole Isiah thing has given this one a little punch for me, a little extra pizzazz that playing FIU would not have had without it. Plus, it’s Isiah’s first game as a college head coach. I’m interested to see if he’s got game in regards to coaching college kids. That and the fact that this kicks off the 100th season of Carolina hoops.

    I was going to take some time and post any local previews about the game, but TarHeelBlue has kindly done that for me, so let’s not let their diligent work go unnoticed. Check it out.

    Three things I’ll be looking for:

    1) Larry Drew II at the point: If (as some of those game previews suggest) the Heels really are a Final Four caliber team, they will need a strong point guard. Drew II did not play significant minutes last year and as such is a big question mark.

    2) Cutting down on turnovers: From memory, I believe Carolina had something like 20 turnovers in the exhibition against Belmont Abbey. That’s unacceptable. UNC fans have been spoiled by the likes of Ty Lawson, who seemingly never gave the ball away. The turnovers didn’t just come from Larry Drew II, who dished out eight dimes to his three turnovers, however, they were spread out over the team.The whole group needs to focus on taking care of the basketball.

    3) Post play: It’s what should be the Heels’ strength this year, so let’s see it in action, eh?!


  • hiphopobserver 12:13 pm on November 7, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Belmont Abbey, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,   

    UNC routs Belmont Abbey 107-59 in exhibition win 

    A lot of good things to take from UNC’s win over Belmont Abbey. Unfortunately I did not make it out because I was out doing hoodrat stuff with my friends, but I’m well-read, so, that counts.

    Deon Thompson goes 11-12 from the field and finishes with 23 points in only 17 minutes. It’s great to see Deon putting up numbers like that to pick up some of that huge scoring void that was left by last year’s departures. Just hoping that Deon doesn’t put up big offensives numbers at the beginning of the season that start trailing off by the end of the season like what happened this year.

    Even after a year, save three games, off the court, Marcus Ginyard was back in the starting lineup and was a box score filler: 9 points, 6 assists and 4 steals in 18 minutes. The 6 assists is what stands out to me. Obviously the back court has been a topic of discussion about this year’s team, but knowing we’ll have Ginyard as an if-needed backup at the point calms me a bit. I know Ginyard has played at the point some in the past and he played last night against a much over-matched opponent, but I still really like that 6 assist line.

    Also back in form, Mr. Ed Davis. Ed continued his offensive blossoming and threw in 13 points. Add that to his 6 rebounds and 4 big blocks and there you have a reason why Ed is considered one of the best big men in the nation. Also, Ed dished out 5 assists. That’s not something Carolina fans are used to seeing from their post players, example Tyler Hansbrough.

    Speaking of Ed, the nation’s best (in this blog’s opinion) 6th man last year got the start last night. He was joined by Larry Drew and Ginyard at guard and Deon and Will Graves at forward. Ed was also listed as a forward.

    The last of the starters, Drew II has a decent showing. In 18 minutes Drew II had 8 assists but also had 3 turnovers. He only shot the ball 4 times, hitting once and never made it to the stripe, leaving him with 2 points on the night. That’s really unacceptable. We need more point production from the sophomore. Graves surprised me a bit with the start, but then it made sense that Roy wouldn’t be starting Henson yet. Graves finished with 6 points and 7 rebounds in 16 minutes but missed both his 3-point attempts.

    Ah, the 3-pointer. Something that has also been mentioned in flaws of this year’s team. By far one of the dark spots in last night’s exhibition. The team shot 25% from behind the arc, hitting on only 2 of 8 shots, one coming from Ginyard the other from David Wear. At least they weren’t out there jacking them all night.

    The other downside from last night, the free throw shooting was atrocious. 13-24 for 54% as a team. Seeing right now that we can’t hit 3s or FTs consistently worries me about games that will be decided in crunch time. Don’t know if we have that right now.

    Quick round-up and the rest of the bunch:

    • Tyler Zeller scored 17 points off the bench and had 6 rebounds and only 2 fouls, pretty good for Tyler. Need him to keep up the scoring, because if he continues coming off the bench that would be a huge lift. Don’t like his 4 TOs.
    • Freshman David Wear had 9 points and 3 rebounds while twin Travis had 7 points and 4 rebounds.
    • John Henson only had 5 points, which I’m sure underwhelms a lot of people because his expectations are so high, but also pulled down 8 rebounds and had 4 blocks. Not the columns in the box score I thought he’d be filling, but I’ll take it.
    • Freshman Dexter Strickland was 4-5 from the field and finished with 8 points and 3 steals. Have to cut back on the 4 TOs.
    • Last Freshman Leslie McDonald took an 0-fer in the points column but grabbed a couple rebounds, an assist, steal and block letting me know he was at least out there hustling.
    • Sophomore Justin Watts contributed 4 rebounds and 4 points in 13 minutes

    Read the whole article and see the box score


  • shwineka 9:02 pm on November 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Belmont Abbey, , ,   

    Belmont Abbey vs. UNC Exhibition Game Prices! 

    So us D.C.-based Rafters bloggers are sitting here debating whether or not to pay the $9.95 to watch the Belmont Abbey exhibition.

    It’s a dilemma.

    We have searched far and wide across the internet for a radio feed or some kind of video. None to be had. 1360 in Chapel Hill is broadcasting high school football online. High. School. Football. As the game has probably already started and NOW our $9.95 will be less worthy, we’ve decided to cry in our beers and read other people’s wrap ups. Go Heels! (even though we can’t figure out what you’re doing now)

    • Charlie 10:28 pm on November 10, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      I had the same dilemma, but was able to catch it on channelsurfing.net. This site has most of the games during the season, even when they are on espnu or fox sports south. My hometown radio station, http://www.1010wspc.com airs Woody Durham.

      • gonzologist 10:53 pm on November 10, 2009 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for the info, Charlie. Some of us here at The Rafters just had to purchase a certain satellite provider’s college basketball package in order to catch all the games. I’m glad that you’re keeping up with Woody. He’s still my favorite voice to hear during Tarheel games, and his Thursday night radio shows with Roy are classic.

  • shwineka 10:32 am on November 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Belmont Abbey, , , , , , , yucky   

    Exhibition Game and Clue about Vanderbilt Scrimmage 

    The N & O has a preview for tonight’s exhibition against Belmont Abbey. The game tonight will be the only exhibition the Heels play before the season opener on Monday. The ever quotable Roy Williams had this to say about the recent scrimmage against Vandy:

    “We just didn’t play well at all. We were just ugly. We were yucky. … But since then, we’ve gotten a lot better. I think the seriousness has hit them, the recognition of how good other people are that they might not have ever heard of. I think that was a good slap in the face for us, as opposed to waiting until the season started.”

    So I’m thinking if they were actually keeping score, which they sometimes don’t do in scrimmages, that UNC might have lost.

    • Zach Evans 11:24 am on November 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      At his book signing at the Bull’s Head bookstore last night, he did briefly mention that he hopes the Heels play better tonight than the Vanderbilt game, although he didn’t go into any specifics.

      • shwineka 11:29 am on November 6, 2009 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks for that detail! Nice.

  • shwineka 2:27 pm on November 3, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: a.j. ogilvy, Belmont Abbey, , , festus ezeli, homecoming, scrimmage, , , , ,   

    Tar Heels Exhibition Game Broadcast on TarHeelBlue.com; Tar Heels Lose Scrimmage to Vanderbilt? 

    Some of you have probably already taken note of this, but I was checking the Heels’ schedule and noticed that the exhibition game against Belmont Abbey this Friday has “TarHeelBlue.com” listed next to it for TV. Turns out those of us who won’t be in Chapel Hill this weekend for homecoming can still catch the exhibition against Belmont Abbey for free online. Go here and scroll to the bottom of the page. Click the icon of a movie camera and find out if you need a plugin. Once you have the plugin, it should be smooth sailing on Friday. Can’t wait to see the team.

    **Update 11/6/09** The exhibition game costs $9.95 to watch online, unless you have a membership to Carolina All Access.


    I’ve heard rumors that UNC lost its scrimmage against Vanderbuilt, which I think was over the weekend. The scrimmage was closed to media and outsiders so I guess only the players really know. Anyone heard anything? If it’s true I wouldn’t lost much sleep over it. Vandy should be decent this year with junior center A.J. Ogilvy named to the preseason All-SEC team. Vandy actually probably matched up pretty well with the Heels, with both Ogilvy and redshirt sophomore Festus Ezeli listed at 6’11”, and seven other players listed at 6’7″ or taller.

    That said, scrimmages are the times for coaches to experiment with different lineups, and with the cluster f*** of big men on UNC this year, I guarantee there was a bevy of combinations being tested. Again, I wouldn’t read into it too much if they did lose.

    **UPDATE – 11/4/09** At least we didn’t (potentially) lose to a D-II school!

    • Chad 8:35 pm on November 7, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      Yea, Carolina did lose this exhibiition to Vanderbilt at Chapel Hill. Yes, Carolina is highly over rated this year even though Vandy does have Ogilvy is still embarrassing to the Tarholes. I mean C’mon Carolina’s supposedly strength is their inside game and not to mention Vandy is suppossed to finish 6 in their SEC division. Looks like the Blue Devils will strike back this year!!

      • shwineka 12:35 pm on November 8, 2009 Permalink | Reply

        Actually, Chad. Vanderbilt is on the verge of breaking into the Top 25. They are returning their four top scorers and are expected to make the NCAA tourney. You can see evidence of that here by checking the amount of points they received in both polls: http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/rankings

        The scrimmage was also in Nashville, not Chapel HIll.

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