Monday, March 21, 2005

Tar Heels Best in the NCAA--Maybe the NBA, Too

Like I said the other day, there's really no good time to talk about North Carolina's basketball team.

That is, unless you're a Tar Heels fan.

Which I'm not.

Awesome. Incredible. Unbelievable. Fantastic.

All of the above.

Those words should more than take care of Roy Williams' juggernaut, right?

Notice, I didn't say athletic.

I'll leave that one for Billy Packer.


The North Carolina team that steamrolled Iowa State, 92-65, yesterday in Charlotte is ovviously the best in the NCAA tournament.

Heck, maybe even the NBA.

If the Tar Heels don't win the collegiate championship, blame coach Roy Williams.

That's why they pay him all those millions of dollars, isn't it?


Speaking of Billy Packer, what TV producer was feeding him information or what newspaper was he reading before the CBS telecast of the Iowa State-North Carolina game?

Packer was trying to make Iowa State feel good in the last half when he said the Cyclones know how to win championships in St. Louis, where the Final Four will be played in a couple of weeks.

He added that Iowa State won its third straight NCAA wrestling title Saturday in St. Louis, andhad five individual champions.

Sorry, Billy.

Right conference. Wrong school.

It was Oklahoma State of the Big 12 that won the NCAA wrestling championship with 153 points to 83 for second-place Michigan.

The status of wrestling at Iowa and Iowa State, meanwhile, is sinking to new depths.

Iowa finished seventh with 66 points, Iowa State 10th with 57.


Iowa State basketball coach Wayne Morgan short-changed Cyclone network play-by-play announcer John Walters and fans of the team by stiffing the postgame radio interview show today.

Instead, assistant coach Damon Archibald answered Walters' questions.

Listeners were told that Morgan was unavailable because hehad to appear at the NCAA interview site.

Morgan owes it to Cyclone fans to appear on the postgame show, for which he is paid.

He should have made arrangements to answer questions from either Walters or commentator Eric Heft immediately following the game, as Iowa coach Steve Alford did when Gary Dolphin and Bobby Hansen on the Iowa tournament broadcast.

There's no excuse for Morgan, who has been uncomfortable on other postgame shows during the season, missing the broadcast on the final Iowa State game of the season.

He should take a lesson from Iowa State football coach Dan McCarney, who never fails to appear for broadcast responsibilities, whether he wants to or not.


Jared Homan turned in a sensational performance in his Iowa State finale--scoring 19 points and grabbing a career-high 20 rebounds against North Carolina.

"Jared Homan was on the biggest stage of his college career and performed like a star," said Archibald. "He was absolutely fabulous on both ends of the court."

I want to repeat that I think Homan is going to help an NBA team next season because has some strong basketball skills, plus a large amount of toughness.

He used his senior season to develop a considerable amount of basketbll maturity. There were times earlier in his career when the competitive Homan appeared ready to get himself into big trouble by perhaps throwing a punch at an opposing player during the heat of a game.

But lately he has harnessed that competitiveness, and seems ready to take his abilities to the professional level.


Speaking of emotions, after Iowa State had fallen behind by more than 20 points in the last half yesterday, Packer said, "I don't like what I'm seeing. This game could get very dangerous."

The outspoken commentator was upset that Iowa State's Curtis Stinson threw an elbow at a North Carolina player while driving in for a lyup. On the player, however, itwas Stinson who fell to the floor in a heap.

Nothing came of Packer's fears. There were no further physical incidents.


It's not often that a coach gets on a postgame radio show and talks about how good nother team and another conference are.

After North Carolina's 27-point victory, Archibald told John Walters that the Atlantic Coast is "the No. 1 conference in the country, and [North Carolina] won the conference. You're talking about the best team in the best conference."


There are good NCAA stories all over the place, but one of the best involves the Northern Iowa pep band.

Because Bucknell's band was on spring breawk, the school arranged to have the UNI band to perform with its fans at Oklahoma City.

Bucknell provided T-shorts and $150 for pizza for the UNI band.

Who needs Bob Huggins' snarls when the NCAA tournament has something like that?

Vol. 4, No. 326
March 21,2005