North Carolina Basketball: Trap no, biscuits yes!

UNC did all they had to do against Wake

UNC did all they had to do against Wake

The graphic is done bySamuel Wilkingmore of his work can be seen at …  Tar Heel Nation

If you were thinking that there could be a let down for UNC after their come from behind win against arch-rival Duke a few days before, head coach Roy Williams‘ squad had one thing to say to the doubters “have a biscuit on us”. North Carolina (20 & 7 ~ 10 & 4) demolished Wake Forest (14 & 13 ~ 4 & 10) by the final of 105 to 72, making this the first game where the Tar Heels hit triple digits.

1 down, 4 to go. UNC needs to go 3-1 in this stretch

UNC needs to go 3-1 in this stretch

Many, both in main stream media, bloggers and fans, had forgotten about this team a while back their play of late as now made people re-think their stand. One of only five ACC squads to have 20 overall wins (10th consecutive season), only one of a quartet to have ten conference victories (ninth time in 10 years). Having beaten the #1, #2, #3 and #4 pre-season teams (first time any program has achieved this), as well as having a nine game winning streak, UNC is well on its way to punching its ticket to March Madness. People that feel that this squad is not a lock at this point are either anti Carolina or do not know the game well.

On a day where the team wore classic uniforms it felt like we were in the times of Jordan & Company not just in clothing but in the way they played, as from the tip off the Tar Heels never looked back. On both sides of the ball, for the most part, the team did all it had to do to win this game in a dominating way. The most impressive thing was that the players never let off the gas pedal, even when up by a huge amount. Overall every starter had double figure points, as well as sophomore forward Brice Johnson. However, for me, that was not the numbers I was looking for in this match up.

All starters got to rest in this one

All starters got to rest in this one (Picture taken by Christy Robbins LeBoeuf … see more of her pics on Facebook)

My concern, as I said in the preview, was if sophomore combo guard Marcus Paige would get more time on the bench than his usual 2-3 minutes. He surely did, as he was only on the hardwoods for 28 minutes. This was the first time this season that the second year player did not log at least 30 minutes. As a matter of fact a lot of the starters were able to get extra time on the bench, none playing more than 29 minutes, due to the fact that this was all but done well before the final whistle was blown. On a side note, it was also nice to see the walk ons get time on the court, as they work just as hard as anyone else in practice.

The minutes was a pleasant surprise for me, but the numbers I was truly impressed with was how North Carolina shot from the charity stripe, ending 24 for 29 {82.8%} (16 out of 17 {94.1%} in the first half). I doubt that this high of a percentage will keep going, but if the squad can hit in the 70%’s it would help them tremendously as they approach the end of the season and wait to see what the Selection Committee thinks of them.

One player I will talk about is fifth year senior Leslie McDonald, who a lot of people have criticized his play since coming back, had his second very good performance in a row. McDonald once again lead the Heels in scoring with 19 points, and if this is something that continues it is going to help North Carolina a great deal with the remainder of their games.

Coach Williams is always teaching

Coach Williams is always teaching (Picture taken by Christy Robbins LeBoeuf … see more of her pics on Facebook)

Of course there will be the ABCers and haters that will say the Demon Deacons are very bad right now, this being their seventh loss in a row, but the reality is that the Tar Heels played the way they should have, focusing on this game and not remembering on the one before against Duke or the one coming up against NC State. In other words, this team seems to be focused on what they need to do and are able to do that on the court.

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The coaching staff and team will now have a bit of time until their next game, a re-match against N.C. State in Raleigh this coming Wednesday. With four games left it will be interesting to see how this team can finish up conference play.