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Zion Williamson breaks silence about recruitment with decision looming

Spartanburg Day star Zion Williamson returned to action for the first time since November on Thursday night and scored 31 points in a win against Asheville Christian. Williamson then discussed where he is in the recruiting process ahead of his decision, which is set for Jan. 20. Being sidelined for nearly two months was beneficial to him as he gets ready to choose his college destination.

Joel Berry says Clemson's request for extra tickets "kind of ticked us off"

Joel Berry said Roy Williams told the team that Clemson had requested extra tickets for this game. That was under the premise that a streak-ending result was expected for the Tigers. “It kind of ticked us off,” Berry said. Berry poured in 17 points, Kenny Williams had 15, Theo Pinson supplied 12 and Luke Maye, playing with stitches on his face in the second half, finished with 11.

Video: Roy Williams Post-Virginia Press Conference

North Carolina basketball coach Roy Williams speaks with the media following the Tar Heels' 61-49 loss to Virginia in Charlottesville on Saturday.

As he comforts a grieving mother, Tar Heels' Joel Berry understands his calling

Joel Berry begins each morning on his sofa, tilts back his head, closes his eyes and imagines all the good that can come out of the day ahead. At night he repeats the process, using the time to reaffirm the blessed things that happened that day and heeding his father’s advice to “always go to bed with a pure heart.’’ Which is why, when Joel read an email from Carol Freedman, he immediately recognized the connection.

Referee Ted Valentine says he is considering retirement in wake of latest controversy

During a telephone interview Saturday, referee Ted Valentine expressed frustration about the criticism he received as a result of his decision to turn his back on North Carolina point guard Joel Berry II during the Tar Heels’ loss at Florida State Wednesday night. He even went so far as to suggest he might walk away from the profession he has worked in for nearly 30 years.

Coby White Moves to 5-Star Recruit in Rivals' Latest Update

The new Rivals150 for the basketball class of 2018 has been released, and three future Tar Heels are among the top 78 with two among the top 25. Nassir Little, 6-7 from Orlando, FL, is at No. 5 and Coby White, a 6-3 guard from Wilson, NC, is at No. 25 and has earned a fifth star. Rechon Black from Concord, NC, is No. 78. Here are the complete rankings:

Lucas: Mom's Messages

Amy Johnson is also Cameron Johnson's mother. She played college basketball at Kent State, where she scored 1,018 points. During Cameron's last season at Pittsburgh, the coaching staff discouraged him from going to the offensive glass. That didn't matter to Amy Johnson. "At halftime of almost every game, I would get a text from her, and it always said, 'Go to the offensive glass!'"

Lucas: Ride The Bus

The Dec. 23 game date meant most of the out-of-state Tar Heels were taking a commercial flight home from New Orleans rather than the UNC charter plane back to RDU. That required the team bus to make a stop at the commercial terminal at the New Orleans airport, which is when the shenanigans began. There was already a palpable excitement on the bus.

North Carolina recruiting: What’s on Roy Williams’ Christmas list?

1. A Zion Williamson decision In all honesty, the decision itself doesn’t really matter all that much for Zion Williamson. North Carolina is a long shot to land the top uncommitted prospect in the Class of 2018 and Williams knows it. Williamson has kept his recruitment close to the vest, so it’s certainly possible that he ends up in Chapel Hill, and that would be great.

Inside The Numbers: UNC's "Death Lineup"

The Golden State Warriors have risen to NBA prominence over the last several years in large part to its so-called “Death Lineup,” a unit that plays a traditional point guard (Steph Curry) alongside a quartet of do-everything wings. With the return of Cameron Johnson, North Carolina coach Roy Williams has been experimenting with his own version of a Death Lineup.

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