Monday, September 24, 2012

Late Night with Roy details set

CHAPEL HILL -- Doesn't seem like all that long ago that I was in a locker room in St. Louis, conducting interviews after North Carolina's final game of the 2011-12 season. And now the 2012-13 season is upon us. That's especially clear now, after UNC announced the details of Late Night With Roy.

As I'm sure you know, Late Night is the Tar Heels' annual celebration of the start of basketball practice. It's also an excuse, I'm told, to watch Roy Williams partake in some skits and a bit of fun.

Here's hoping his recent surgery won't hamper any of that.

The details for the 2012 version of Late Night With Roy:

When: Friday, Oct. 12 at 7:30 p.m.

Where: Dean E. Smith Center

Admission: Free

TV: Streamed live on ESPN3

Parking: $10 per automobile. No parking for Late Night will be available prior to 4 p.m. Approximately 300 spaces will become available 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. in the Rams Head Deck. Parking will then be on a first-come, first-served basis in the Rams Head Deck as spaces become available toward the end of the work day. The Craige Deck will open at 4 p.m. Parking will become available at 5 p.m. in the Manning and Bowles Lots and in the Jackson Deck. Disability parking will be in the Williamson Lot.

Follow @LateNightwRoy on Twitter for behind-the-scenes planning and the official countdown to the start of the UNC basketball season. Be a part of the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtag #LNWR2012.

So there you have it ...

-- Andrew Carter

Friday, September 21, 2012

N.C. State approves raises for Mark Gottfried, Elliott Avent

Mark Gottfried's contract got an automatic two-year extension when N.C. State made the NCAA tournament last March. The second-year basketball coach got a $750,000 raise on Friday for the Wolfpack's 24-win season which ended in the Sweet 16.

Gottfried will make $1.95 million annually, which ranks third among ACC coaches, behind Duke's Mike Krzyzewski and North Carolina's Roy Williams.

The N.C. State Board of Trustees approved raises for both Gottfried and baseball coach Elliott Avent, who led his team into the final 16 of the NCAA tournament.

Gottfried's supplemental income went from $450,000 per year to $1.2 million under the new deal, which runs through the 2017-18 season. His base salary of $750,000 per year remains the same.

N.C. State went 24-13 in Gottfried's first season reaching the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2006 and the Sweet 16 for only the second time since 1989. His original contract, signed in April 2011, called for an automatic two-year extension if he made the NCAA tournament in either of his first two seasons.

Avent led N.C. State's baseball team to a 43-20 finish and a spot in the Super Regional round in the NCAA tournament. Avent received a $25,713 raise which brings his annual guaranteed compensation to $219,125 and his contract was extended one year, through the 2015 season.

- Joe Giglio

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

UNC's Roy Williams uses jewelry to impress recruit Julius Randle

John Calipari is a difficult man to beat these days on the college basketball recruiting trail. If the Kentucky coach seems to be able to land any prospect he wants, well, there’s a reason for that. He usually does.

Which is maybe why North Carolina coach Roy Williams traveled to Texas with a bunch of jewelry.

According to USA Today, Calipari on Tuesday traveled to Plano, Texas to visit Julius Randle, a 6-foot-9 forward who some recruiting analysts believe is the best prospect in the class of 2013. During the visit, the newspaper reported, Calipari showed off the ring he won when Kentucky won the national championship back in April.

And yes, Randle was impressed, USA Today reported.

Not to be outdone, though, Williams packed 30 rings when he visited with Randle. There were the national championship rings, presumably, that he and the Tar Heels won in 2005 and 2009, and various rings from Final Fours and conference championships over the years.

About all the jewelry, Randle told USA Today this:

“When coach Williams opened the case you almost couldn't look directly in it for fear of going blind. It was crazy.”

Carolyn Kyles, Randle’s mother, was also apparently impressed by Williams’ hardware.

She told USA Today, “Yeah, coach Williams was ready for coach Cal with those rings. He got him there.”

But will Williams get Randle? Stay tuned …

- Andrew Carter

2012-13 UNC basketball schedule: First impressions

North Carolina on Monday released its 2012-13 basketball schedule. It includes, of course, trips to Maui, Indiana and Texas and, for the first time, 18 ACC games.

After taking some time to evaluate the schedule, here are some initial thoughts:

First impression: Good schedule. Any fan of any ACC school has to like the new 18-game schedule, which is arriving a season early in anticipation of the arrival of Pitt and Syracuse. But for now, it means that UNC will play a home-and-home with all three of the in-state ACC schools, which is the way it should be. The non-conference schedule is attractive, with trips to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational and to Indiana and Texas.

Revenge factor: The Jan. 12 game at Florida State is the obvious one that coach Roy Williams and his players might have circled on their calendars. It comes almost exactly one year to the day that UNC suffered that 33-point loss at Florida State last season. The Tar Heels will also have a chance to enact some payback against UNLV, which provided the Heels with their first loss last season. The Rebels visit the Smith Center on Dec. 29.

Toughest stretch: During the non-conference portion of the schedule, UNC will face its toughest stretch in mid-to-late November. Just a week into the season, the team will travel cross country to play at Long Beach State on Nov. 16, which has won at least 22 games in each of the past two seasons. Then the Heels go to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational and when they return from that they go back on the road for a game at Indiana on Nov. 27.

In the conference, the final five games aren’t likely to be easy. Three of them are against N.C. State, Florida State and Duke – though UNC will play all of those games at the Smith Center. The Heels also go on the road to Clemson and Maryland. Both those teams have a lot of question marks, but Clemson and Maryland can be difficult places to play even when the home team isn’t all that great.

Make up ground: An ACC schedule never offers all that much room for make-up ground, but UNC has a good chance to get off to a solid start, at least. After that game at Florida State on Jan. 12, UNC hosts Maryland and Georgia Tech. As it stands now, the Heels should be favored by double-digits in both of those games. The next game, at N.C. State, will be difficult but UNC follows that with perhaps its “easiest” road game of the conference schedule, at Boston College.

Lucky, or unlucky, break: Let’s go unlucky. Not only does UNC have to play N.C. State and Duke twice, but the Heels also play Miami and Florida State twice, and both of those teams should factor into the conference race. Virginia Tech, Clemson and Boston College could all serve to boost UNC’s conference win total, but the Heels play each of those teams only once.

By the way: UNC's "Late Night with Roy Williams" is set for Oct. 12, a Friday. An official time has yet to be determined, but it will probably be around 8ish, I'm told. Stay tuned for further details.

- Andrew Carter

Monday, September 10, 2012

2012-13 schedule analysis: N.C. State Wolfpack hoops

Nonconference: Miami (Ohio), Penn State, Providence or UMass, UNC-Asheville, at Michigan, Connecticut, Cleveland State, Norfolk State, Stanford, St. Bonaventure, Western Michigan, UNC-Greensboro

ACC home-and-away: UNC, Duke, Boston College, Georgia Tech, Clemson, Wake Forest, Florida State

ACC home only: Virginia Tech, Miami

ACC road only: Maryland, Virginia

Highlights: The nonconference matchups with Michigan (Nov. 27) and UConn (Dec. 4), and the ACC games against UNC at home (Jan. 26) for ESPN's GameDay, and at Duke (Feb. 7).

Lowlights: The ACC wheel spun and landed again on two games each with Georgia Tech and Boston College.

Bottom line: N.C. State made the NCAA tournament last season on the strength of its nonconference schedule. There won't be as many big games outside the ACC this season, but the schedule is loaded with RPI-helpers and experienced tournament teams.

The ACC schedule will be tougher, with two games each against Duke and FSU (after only one last season) but it's also spread out more evenly.

Last year, N.C. State went through lulls with seemingly meaningless games (BC-GT-Wake) and then had a Duke-FSU-UNC stretch. This year, the games that will be of interest — Duke, UNC, FSU — have more space to them which should add up to a better rhythm to the season.

2012-13 schedule

Nov. 9    Miami (Ohio)
Nov. 15    x-Penn State
Nov. 16    x-Providence/UMass
Nov. 18    x-San Juan Tip-Off
Nov. 23    UNC-Asheville
Nov. 27    @ Michigan
Dec. 4    y-UConn
Dec. 8    z-Cleveland State
Dec. 15     Norfolk State
Dec. 18    Stanford
Dec. 22    St. Bonaventure
Dec. 29    Western Michigan
Dec. 31    UNC-Greensboro
Jan. 5    @ Boston College
Jan. 9    Georgia Tech
Jan. 12    Duke
Jan. 16    @ Maryland
Jan. 20    Clemson
Jan. 22    @ Wake Forest
Jan. 26    UNC
Jan. 29    @ Virginia
Fe. 2    Miami
Feb. 7    @ Duke
Fe. 10    @ Clemson
Feb. 16    Virginia Tech
Feb. 19    Florida State
Fe. 23    @ UNC
Feb. 27    Boston College
March 3    @ Atlanta
March 6     Wake Forest
March 9    @ Florida State

Notes: x-Puerto Rico Tip-Off, San Juan, Puerto Rico; y-Madison Square Garden, New York; z-Reynolds Coliseum

Duke Blue Devils release full 2012-13 basketball schedule

Finally, after months of releasing it in pieces, Duke has revealed the final version of its 2012-13 mens basketball schedule. Not much new here, but there are a few dates and opponents that hadn't previously been announced:

Fri., Nov. 9: Georgia State at Duke, 7 p.m., ESPNU

Tues., Nov. 13: Duke vs. Kentucky (Georgia Dome, Atlanta), TBD

Sun., Nov. 18: Florida Gulf Coast at Duke, 8 p.m., ESPNU

Tues., Nov. 22: Duke vs. Minnesota (Nassau. Bahamas), 3:30 p.m., AXS

Wed., Nov. 23: Duke vs. VCU/Memphis, (Nassau. Bahamas), 7 p.m., NBCS

Thurs., Nov. 24: Battle 4 Atlantis championship, 9:30 p.m., NBCS

Wed., Nov. 28: Ohio State at Duke, 9:30 p.m., ESPN

Sat., Dec. 1: Delaware at Duke, TBD

Sat., Dec. 8: Duke vs. Temple (Izoid Center, New Jersey), 3:15 p.m., ESPN

Wed., Dec. 19: Cornell at Duke, 7 p.m., ESPNU

Thurs., Dec. 20: Elon at Duke, 7 p.m., ESPNU

Sat., Dec. 29: Santa Clara at Duke, noon, ESPN2

Wed., Jan. 2: Duke vs. Davidson (Charlotte), 7 p.m., ESPN2

Sat., Jan. 5: Wake Forest at Duke, 12 p.m., ESPNU

Tues., Jan. 8: Clemson at Duke, 7 p.m., ESPNU

Sat., Jan. 12: Duke at N.C. State, 12 p.m., ESPN

Thurs., Jan. 17: Georgia Tech at Duke, 9 p.m., ESPN/ESPN 2

Wed. Jan. 23: Duke at Miami, 7 p.m., ESPN

Sat., Jan. 26: Maryland at Duke, 1 p.m., CBS

Wed. Jan. 30: Duke at Wake Forest: 8 p.m., ACC Network

Sat., Feb. 2: Duke at Florida State, 2 p.m., ESPN

Thurs., Feb. 7: N.C. State at Duke, 9 p.m., ESPN

Sun., Feb 10: Duke at Boston College, 6 p.m., ESPNU

Wed., Feb. 13: North Carolina at Duke, 9 p.m., ESPN

Sat., Feb 16: Duke at Maryland, 6 p.m., ESPN/ESPN2

Thurs., Feb. 21: Duke at Virginia Tech, 9 p.m., ESPN/ESPN2

Sun. Feb. 24: Boston College at Duke, 2 p.m., ACC Network

Thurs., Feb. 28: Duke at Virginia, 9 p.m., ESPN/ESPN2

Sat., March 2: Miami at Duke, 6 p.m., ESPN

Tues., March 5: Virginia Tech at Duke, 7 p.m., ESPNU

Sat., March 9, Duke at North Carolina, 9 p.m., ESPN

First impressions: Duke will be tested right out of the gate. With November matchups against Kentucky and Ohio State, and a potential date with Louisville looming in the Battle 4 Atlantis final, the Blue Devils will get an early season test against several programs expected to start the year in the top 10.

The five December games will provide a nice change-of-pace in between the tough beginning and conference play, and the rematch with Temple is intriguing. When No. 5 Duke lost 78-73 to unranked Temple Jan. 4, it ended several notable Blue Devils streaks, including 18 consecutive wins against Atlantic 10 opponents (dating back to 1996) and 49 straight wins against teams outside the traditional six power conferences. It also marked the fourth consecutive season that Duke had lost to an unranked nonconference opponent.

Toughest stretch: It could be that early season trio mentioned above. Looking at the ACC schedule, though, Duke was dealt a pretty favorable hand. There's just one Thursday-Saturday, three-day turnaround, and one instead of two dates with last year's ACC champion, Florida State.

That said, the Feb. 2 trip down to Tallahassee followed by a Feb. 7 home date against N.C. Central will probably be the toughest back-to-back conference challenge. The Feb. 10 trip up to Boston College is well-timed, giving Duke a tune-up before the first matchup against North Carolina.

Make up ground: Hosting Wake Forest and Clemson to open conference play should get the Blue Devils off on the right stretch. And the three games immediately following the Feb. 13 game with North Carolina—at Maryland, at Virginia Tech and against Boston College—is Duke's only three-game stretch against teams with losing conference records last year.

Lucky break: There will not be another Michael Snaer buzzer-beater this year in Cameron. Just one matchup with Florida State is a scheduling gift. The other one-game opponents—Georgia Tech, Clemson—are teams Duke probably wouldn't mind playing twice. Especially the Yellow Jackets.

Biggest quirk: The Feb. 13 game against the Tar Heels is the latest ever date for the first meeting between the two teams. That's right, going back all the way to 1920, Duke and UNC have never waited that long to play.

- Laura Keeley

UNC releases 2012-13 basketball schedule

CHAPEL HILL — And at long last, we have a North Carolina basketball schedule. UNC moment ago released its 2012-13 schedule.
Here it is:
Fri. Oct. 26 vs. Shaw (exhibition), 7:30 p.m.,
Fri. Nov. 9 vs. Gardner-Webb, TBA, TBA
EA Sports Maui Invitational Hosted by Chaminade University
Sun. Nov. 11 vs. Florida Atlantic, 2:30 p.m., ESPNU
Fri. Nov. 16 at Long Beach State, 11 p.m., ESPNU
EA Sports Maui Invitational Hosted by Chaminade University, Lahaina Civic Center, Maui, Hawaii
Mon. Nov. 19 vs. Mississippi State, Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii, 6 p.m., ESPN2
Tue. Nov. 20 vs. Butler or Marquette, Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii, 2:30 or 8 p.m., TBA
Wed. Nov. 21 vs. Chaminade, Illinois, Southern California  or Texas, Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii, TBA, TBA
ACC/Big Ten Challenge
Tue. Nov. 27 at Indiana, 9:30 p.m., ESPN
Sat. Dec. 1 vs. UAB, 6 p.m., ESPNU
Sat. Dec. 8 vs. East Tennessee State, TBA, TBA
Sat. Dec. 15 vs. East Carolina, Noon, ESPNU
Wed. Dec. 19 at Texas, 9 p.m., ESPN2
Sat. Dec. 22 vs. McNeese State, 1 p.m., ESPNU
Sat. Dec. 29 vs. UNLV, 2 p.m., ESPN2
Sun. Jan. 6 at Virginia, 8 p.m., ESPNU
Thu. Jan. 10 vs. Miami, 7 p.m. ESPN or ESPN2
Sat. Jan. 12 at Florida State, 2 p.m., ESPN
Sat. Jan. 19 vs. Maryland, Noon, ESPN
Wed. Jan. 23 vs. Georgia Tech, 9 p.m., ESPN
Sat. Jan. 26 at N.C. State, 7 p.m., ESPN
Tue. Jan. 29 at Boston College, 9 p.m., ESPNU
Sat. Feb. 2 vs. Virginia Tech, Noon, ACC Network
Tue. Feb. 5 vs. Wake Forest, 7 p.m., ESPNU
Sat. Feb. 9 at Miami, 2 p.m., ESPN or ESPN2
Wed. Feb. 13 at Duke, 9 p.m., ESPN/ACC Network
Sat. Feb. 16 vs. Virginia, Noon, ACC Network
Tue. Feb. 19 at Georgia Tech, 9 p.m., ACC Network
Sat. Feb. 23 vs. N.C. State, 4 p.m. ESPN or ESPN2
Thu. Feb. 28 at Clemson, 7 p.m., ESPN or ESPN2
Sun. March 3 vs. Florida State, 2 p.m., CBS
Wed. March 6 at Maryland, 7 p.m. ESPN or ESPN2
Sat. March 9 vs. Duke, 9 p.m., ESPN
So there you have it. Stay tuned for some initial thoughts on the schedule.
-Andrew Carter

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Davidson basketball chooses captains

Basketball coach Bob McKillop said seniors Nik Cochran, Jake Cohen, JP Kuhlman and Clint Mann were named team captains for the 2012-13 season.

They were selected in a vote by the team and coaching staff.

- Observer News Services