Tar Heels pursue nonconference video games amid ACC postponements


North Carolina hasn’t been sitting round and ready to see if there might be time to reschedule its postponed Atlantic Coast Convention video games.

The Tar Heels added, and received, a nonconference sport final week towards Northeastern, and have one other Wednesday towards Marquette. Coach Roy Williams has been open about desirous to play as many video games as potential to help the event of a freshman-heavy group nonetheless working to solidify its NCAA Event hopes.

“It’s authorized to have 27 regular-season video games, I’d prefer to get 27 in,” Williams stated.

“Should you lose a sport, we’re going to attempt to do the whole lot we will to get the ACC video games rescheduled. And if that doesn’t work, then there’s quite a lot of groups across the nation which are like us, that don’t have as many video games. So I feel it’s good for youths to play.”

The Tar Heels (14-7, 8-5 ACC) had postponed residence video games towards Clemson (Jan. 9) and No. 16 Virginia Tech (Feb. 16), together with Tuesday’s highway sport at Boston Faculty, amid COVID-19 points involving their opponents. There was additionally a last-minute postponement of the Feb. 8 residence sport towards Miami, which adopted the emergence of social media video exhibiting Tar Heels gamers Armando Bacot and Day’Ron Sharpe mingling with different individuals celebrating a win towards Duke and nobody carrying a masks.

The Tar Heels aren’t alone in pursuing nonconference video games. No. 12 Houston introduced Sunday it will host Western Kentucky from Convention USA on Thursday, and in addition added a sport towards NAIA program Our Girl of the Lake earlier this month (a 112-46 win).

However the Tar Heels have performed extra highway video games (9) than residence (eight), together with simply 5 of 13 league video games at residence. UNC, which additionally performed 4 neutral-court video games, is unbeaten at residence.

“It helps us study extra about ourselves and issues we’ve started working on,” freshman guard Kerwin Walton stated of including video games. “And I feel all of us can agree, each participant within the nation may agree, that enjoying is method higher than working towards.”

Final Wednesday’s 82-62 win towards Northeastern from the Colonial Athletic Affiliation crammed a midweek opening for the Tar Heels following the Virginia Tech postponement. The BC postponement created one other midweek opening finally crammed by Marquette. It marks the primary time UNC has performed two regular-season nonconference video games in February or March in 32 years.

The timing labored, too, for the the Golden Eagles (10-12, 6-10 Huge East), who beat Butler final Wednesday however weren’t resulting from play once more till visiting Connecticut on Saturday. Like Williams, Marquette coach Steve Wojciechowski is attempting to play as many video games as potential and put out feelers to see what choices could be accessible.

“It’s an ideal alternative for us,” Wojciechowski stated. “It’s a possibility that I feel our guys are enthusiastic about. It’s a possibility to play towards a historic program. And due to the circumstances of the 12 months, my feeling is: Why not reap the benefits of that?”

Williams stated UNC continues to be having “preliminary” conversations about probably filling one other opening subsequent week.

Requested whether or not that included any potential rescheduled ACC video games, Williams quipped: “We’re having discussions with anyone and all people, and three totally different groups within the NBA as effectively.”


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Observe Aaron Beard on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/aaronbeardap

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