Complete coverage of North Carolina Tar Heels Basketball.
Serge Zwikker “Teared Up” After Receiving $200 Check From Dean Smith
Former center Serge Zwikker, who played for the Tar Heels from 1993-1997, reportedly had a strong reaction to the gesture. ESPN’s Darren Rovell reports that Zwikker “teared up” after receiving the letter and claimed he’d never cash it.
Unfinished business for UNC's Marcus Paige
UNC point guard Marcus Paige didn't deliver a hard yes to say he'd return for his senior season, but the tenor of his talk after the Tar Heels' loss in the Sweet 16 was a strong endorsement that he's got unfinished business in Chapel Hill. “That could change in five minutes, because I'm a 21-year-old kid,” Paige quipped after Wisconsin beat UNC 79-72 in STAPLES Center on Thursday.
Dave Colescott 'blown away' by Dean Smith letter
Dave Colescott nearly threw the letter away thinking it was junk mail. But Colescott, a former player at North Carolina who played for the late Dean Smith, opened the letter and it brought tears to his eyes. “On the return part of the envelope it said ‘Dean E. Smith Estate,’ so I was skeptical,” said Colescott, 57, who lives in Winston-Salem.
Dean Smith’s Legacy Reaches Central Iowa
Steve Krafcisin played one season at North Carolina before transferring closer to home at Iowa. The emotions of opening a letter from the late, Dean Smith showed just how much that one year meant to him. The letter is one of 180 $200 checks that Smith posthumously sent to his UNC letter winners. Krafcisin is one of only two players to play in two Final Fours for two different teams.
Tar Heels Grow in Late Season Success, Final Loss
North Carolina played some of its best basketball at the end of the season. Justin Jackson finally emerged as the player many had hoped, and Joel Berry gave outstanding versatility in the backcourt. The ongoing development of Nate Britt, Theo Pinson, and Isiah Hicks gives UNC quality depth and when healthy, Marcus Paige, Kennedy Meeks, and Brice Johnson can be a formidable threesome.
Tar Heels to use loss as fuel, talk returning next season
A disappointing loss to Wisconsin in the Sweet Sixteen brings the 2014-2015 UNC basketball season to a close. The Tar heels led by as much as seven in the second half, but a late run by the Badgers and clutch free throws separated the No. 1 seed as they pulled out the 79-72 win. The attention now turns to the 2015-2016 Tar Heel campaign where UNC is likely to return all five starters.
Sweet 16 game: a run cut short
A one-point deficit is cruel and deceiving. But for this team, it’s fitting. It embodies how the Tar Heels have lived and died this season: almost, but not quite there. That’s been the team’s misfortune of a mantra. Marcus Paige certainly knows this. He admits it was all he could think about near the end of fourth-seeded UNC’s 79-72 Sweet 16 loss to West Region No. 1 seed Wisconsin on Thursday.
Sweet 16 stage not too big for freshmen Justin Jackson, Joel Berry
The score was close, an Elite Eight berth was at stake and North Carolina was running against slow-paced Wisconsin. Two freshmen were leading the fastbreak. UNC doubled its lead when point guard Joel Berry fed Justin Jackson for a layup, a sequence that connected the college newcomers during a strong showing in a 79-72 loss to the Badgers.
Tar Heels Eager for Next Step
The loss to the Badgers was a talking point, as well as the harsh realization that the 2014-15 season had come to a close, but there was also a willingness, a preference almost, to focus on the positives of the postseason run and the corrections that need to occur for a deeper run next year. Thursday’s loss highlighted a trend that has plagued the Tar Heels all season long:
Unfinished business for UNC's Marcus Paige
UNC guard Marcus Paige didn't deliver a hard yes to say he'd return for his senior season, but the tenor of his talk after the Tar Heels' loss in the Sweet 16 was a strong endorsement that he's got unfinished business in Chapel Hill. "We've got guys in this locker room that [are] going to realize that if they make improvements, we can be a really special team next year, myself included."
Strong showing for Tar Heels adds to pain of Sweet 16 loss
This one hurt. It was painful to the players, who had executed the plan developed by coach Roy Williams well enough to look like the better team for 30 minutes. And it was perhaps more painful to the coaches, who had drawn a high-level effort out of a group that began the 2014-15 season with Final Four aspirations but played with an inconsistency that prevented it from entering the Tournament with a higher seed.
Upset Bid Comes Up Short For North Carolina
UNC played as Wisconsin’s equal for the majority of Thursday’s Sweet 16 matchup. The Tar Heels, however, were unable to match the Badgers in the final minutes in their 79-72 loss. Wisconsin entered Thursday’s matchup as the nation’s most efficient team offensively, and that quality was evident in the game’s final minutes as the Badgers scored 14 points over their final eight possessions.
Heels upset bid falls short
Every single possession counted in this one. The Sweet 16 matchup between North Carolina and Wisconsin was not all that fast-paced, which goes against the way the Tar Heels like to win games. So Thursday's NCAA Tournament West regional semifinal in STAPLES Center was a nip-and-tuck tussle. Wisconsin, a No. 1 seed, squeezed out a 79-72 win. The Tar Heels were a No. 4 seed.
Video: Williams, Paige, Jackson Post-Wisconsin Press Conference
Roy Williams, Justin Jackson and Marcus Paige met with the media following North Carolina's 79-72 Sweet Sixteen loss to Wisconsin on Thursday in Los Angeles.
Walking into the last Carolina locker room of the season is a miserable feeling. There was Roy Williams, always emotional after the final game, choking up as he tried to talk to his team. It is one of the weirdest dichotomies you will find; bleeding into the room are the sounds of pep bands as two more teams await the opportunity to keep playing. Inside the room, though, it’s all over.