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January 4, 2009 at 10:08 pm | Posted in Jackie Manuel | 3 Comments

That was a bad day o sport. An expected loss from my Dolphins and an unexpected loss from my Tar Heels makes for a lousy end to the holiday. I don’t have much to say about the gridiron. Baltimore was better and even though there were some opportunities for Miami to pull out a win, the Ravens were able to move the ball at will.

I have plenty of thoughts overreactions about the basketball game.

  1. We are not as good as we thought. I love Basketball Prospectus and even though basketball stats are limited in what they can tell us, I generally agree with much of their content. This, on the other hand is ridiculous. There have been several better basketball teams than the 08-09 Tar Heels in the last 13 years. We have a very deep, experienced, and talented team. Still the reason we are so deep with experience is that none of our players were lottery projected last season. The 04-05 team was better. Certainly you could argue that the chemistry or whatever is better but when I say better, I mean more talented. Dook in 99 was more talented that this team too and I’m sure if I had not been drinking since 1 pm I could think of others as well. I’m not trying to blog that these guys are not good or that they are not the best team in the country this year. I admit to wondering how good this team was after watching us destroy 13 teams. This was not a wake up call. The wake up call was BC by six at the half. They beat the crap out of us. Whether you prefer the anecdotal evidence of BC getting layup after layup while many of our players struggled to finish easy baskets or whether you prefer the NBA draft projections, this team is not even the best team Roy Williams has had since he returned to Chapel Hill.
  2. Play Ed Davis. I have a mad crush on the kid. The baby faced lefty is Deon’a equal on offense and much better on D. He is our best rebounder. Deon is a fine player and has shown massive improvement. It is not his fault that Ed is probably our most talented player. Get him more than 16 minutes.
  3. Don’t send the team to Reno for New Year’s Eve three days before the ACC opener. Who knows if it had anything to do with shooting 29 percent in the second half and missing key free throws down the stretch?
  4. Danny Green is way more important than I realized. It does not appear that he can be replaced.
  5. Tyrese Rice owned Tywon. Lawson has been our best player this season, and if he had played better we might have pulled it out. Perhaps it was just one of those games but it sure was unsettling too see Tywon get outplayed for the first time since April 5, 2008.
  6. This was not a good loss. I’m sure Caulton and others will talk about the ‘lessons’ learned about having to do more than show up. Losing your first conference home game is a very bad sign. We did lose two at home last season but if Dook and Wake are as good as they’ve looked at times, we may end up competing with them for a #1 seed. Perhaps Roy will git after em and also play Ed Davis more and we’ll look back at this as a turning point. It will never be a good loss.
  7. I apologize for that picture but if we don’t play our best players instead of our most experienced or hard working players, we are headed for a year like 1994. That team was deep and experienced too. I trust Roy and this blog is clearly an attempt to deal with a tough day o sport, but tonight was a bit worrying, no?


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  1. I miss your postings, Jackie Manuel. You used to visited THF a lot with interesting observations.

    I agree with everything you said. How is that for being a toady?

    I actually think that both the 2005 team and the 2007 team might be more talented than the current group. At least in 2007 when Ellington and Lawson got torched by Georgetown’s guards, Carolina had Brandan Wright and Reyshawn Terry, both of which had pretty good games on both ends of the court to at least get us to overtime.

    Even with the uneven performance of the 2005 crew in the NBA, you still have two decent NBA’ers in Felton and Marvin Williams, and a sporadically brilliant player in Rashad McCants to go along with the just happy to be there guys, Sean and Jawad.

    With the exception of Danny Green, and maybe someday Ed Davis, I don’t see any of the current guys doing much more than journeyman work in the NBA.

    I think Ellington and Lawson might want to consider enjoying the ride for another year. How are they going to play in the NBA when they get torched every time they play another competent guard duo, as in the Georgetown and Kansas games from the last two seasons?

    I think we probably were all a bit fooled by the gaudy 36-3 record from last year that included three overtime wins and a slew of other wins in toss-up games. This team has no super talents like Carter or Jamison, nor does it have dependable outside shooters who can create their own shots like Felton, or McCants, and we don’t have a defensive stopper like Jackie Manuel. It also appears to lack the heart of the 2005 team that came back against Duke and Villanova and was surprisingly good defensively.

    Maybe if Zeller comes back in February, that could change things….

  2. […] only does Young play for the Panthers, Pitt is also the top-ranked team in the country, thanks to Carolina’s loss to Boston College […]

  3. my dissappointment stems from Roy’s Teams consitently being unable to defend vs. the flex offense. Horrible.

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