Three things to take away from the Tar Heels' defeat:
1. The Tar Heels do have a talent issue - at least for now.
Some have argued this season that among UNC's problems, talent is not among them. But last night proved once again that Heels do have a talent deficiency. It was evident earlier this season when UNC played at Indiana. And it was clear last night against an N.C. State that simply had better players at nearly every position. UNC has plenty of good players, too. It'd be silly to argue otherwise. And it's not like the Heels are without talent. But UNC's four freshmen are still developing and aren't as strong now - physically or mentally - as they will be down the road. Further, the guys UNC needs to be star players - James Michael McAdoo, Reggie Bullock, P.J. Hairston - aren't quite there yet, either.
2. It was a tough night for Marcus Paige.
The biggest difference in this game, to me, was how dominant N.C. State was at point guard. Lorenzo Brown finished with 20 points and 11 assists, and was a master during the first half of getting the Wolfpack out in transition. It was a struggle, though, for UNC freshman Marcus Paige, who missed his first eight shots and finished with seven points, four assists and three turnovers. Paige played well late but by then the Heels were in scramble mode, desperately trying to get back into the game.
3. Roy Williams doesn't want to hear it, but UNC will have to build off a moral victory.
Tar Heels coach Roy Williams didn't much want to hear that this was a moral victory for his team. Sure the Tar Heels cut a 28-point deficit to five with about 30 seconds to play, but Williams basically said moral victories are for pansies. He also said learning experiences "are for babies" but, still, UNC has no choice but to attempt to build off its second-half performance. The Heels shot 60.5 percent and scored 57 points - the third-most they've scored in a half this season.
QUOTABLE "Well in my opinion there's not a lot I can say. It was a butt-kicking, is what it was. We were going to try to emphasize sprinting back on defense, and that's the thing we talked about yesterday, and talked about today ... first half today they have 20 fast-break points to our zero. So I didn't do a very good job of coaching and getting our guys ready. I'm not big into moral victories whatsoever, and we did try to make a comeback but I think our teams will always make a comeback. But North Carolina state was more prepared, they had a greater sense of urgency and they worked harder." -Roy Williams
"We've got to have a greater sense of urgency, we've got to have greater effort. Got to have better coaching. ... It was, I've already said it - it was a butt-kicking." -Roy Williams
"I'm not into moral victories, guys, and I'm not into this pansy-kind of crap. We stunk." -Roy Williams
"They were guarding us a lot harder than we were guarding them. And all this stuff about streaks, and people making comments - on game nights you've got to step out there and you've got to play. And we didn't do that." -Roy Williams
"We definitely need to learn from this. Florida State was a good road win for us, but this was a whole other level, coming in here playing N.C. State at their own gym. But regardless, we didn't show up ready to play." -James Michael McAdoo
"I mean, I can learn a lot from watching the first 30 minutes of that film - just trying to keep our team under more composure in a hostile environment. That's my job as a point guard. I think I can definitely do better in that regard." -Marcus Paige
- Andrew Carter