North Carolina soundly defeated Georgia Tech for an ACC home win on Saturday afternoon and also executed a proper Dean Smith tribute by executing the four-corners offense for a basket on the team’s first offensive possession.
But after the win, head coach Roy Williams got a little testy about the home crowd’s reaction to the play — as well as the crowd’s general apathy at home.
According to Randy Miller of NJ Advance Media, Williams addressed the North Carolina home crowd at length with reporters on Saturday after the game:
“I was a little disappointed that more of our crowd didn’t have more savvy, but I felt like they were asleep most of the day anyway. That wasn’t intended to be criticism, but it’s criticism. We need some daggum help.
“We’ll go on the road and people are screaming like banshees or something. And today it was like every time I yelled at a player, they turned around and looked at me. I yelled at a player Wednesday night (at Duke) and they never even knew I was over there yelling. They thought I was doing freaking exercises. So if you want to act like I’m chastising the fans, come in and invest.
“My gosh, we’re trying to honor the greatest coach I’ve ever … maybe one of the greatest individuals I’ve ever known. I can understand if you didn’t recognize (the four corners) because it sort of went quickly and it’s nice that (we got) a backdoor layup, but don’t sit over there and feel like we have to entertain you. This is a team thing. Now does anybody want to ask me any questions about the game that I’ve got off that soap box?”
The North Carolina fan base should get a little slack for not knowing the four-corners offense, but I can understand Williams asking for more out of the home crowd’s energy. When the shot clock was introduced into ACC play during the 1983-84 season, the four-corners offense wasn’t used anymore and many fans under the age of 30 — meaning the student section — wouldn’t necessarily see it and appreciate it until later on a replay.
Williams has also seen some pressure from fans in the form of graduates writing into the Daily Tar Heel. A graduate of North Carolina in 2010, Andrew Elliot let his feelings be known that some younger fans may choose not to be fans of Tar Heel basketball because of the team’s recent lack of Final Four runs.
I’m not sure fans like Elliot will buy into Williams asking for more out of North Carolina fans, but it will be interesting to see how this plays out in the future.
Also of note, Williams spoke of his selection to go with the four-corners offense to Miller.
“I wanted it to be something very sincere from our team … to coach Dean Smith,” Williams said. “So we didn’t want anybody (knowing about it beforehand and) sending out a daggum Twitter or fax or whatever the dickens we go on today. I wanted it to be something from my team to coach Smith and that worked out great.”
At the end of all of this North Carolina stopped a two-game losing streak with a convincing 29-point win as they prepare for N.C. State on Tuesday. The Tar Heels are 19-8 and 9-5 in the ACC during the season.