Carolina Fever

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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I’m a Tar Heel basketball fan. If you didn’t know that by now, sorry. If you’re a Duke fan, you might as well leave right now.

Ashvegas is tight with the Heels. I’m a UNC grad. Coach Roy, birthed over the mountain in Mac-Dowell County, cut his basketball teeth in the Swannanoa Valley. Rashad McCants went to school just down the street at Erwin High for a couple of years, before starting his formal NBA training at some basketball mill that’s referred to as an “academy” or something.

So, pedigree established, here goes.

Rashad wasn’t feeling too well yesterday, but he still managed a couple of nice dunks and dropped a few dimes. It’s nice to see Rashad sharing the love a little. The Asheville Citizen-Times’ Keith Jarrett explains how a little less is a a lot more when it comes to Rashad’s game. Keith on McCants having a little fun with the Cameron Crazies shows a side of McCants few in the media seem to want to show.

The win had a breezy, celebratory feel to it. The Clemson streak of losing 51 straight in Chapel Hill is alive. It was Jawad’s birthday, and he made his mark in the record books. In the stands, J.R. Reid and Eric Montross watched the win, as did several other former players.

That’s the Carolina family. People don’t get it when they hear talk about the “Carolina family,” but it’s pretty simple. Traditions passed along, like the scorer pointing to the assist man, somethiing Dean Smith required years ago. Old players returning to offer support, advice, a sense of pride and caring. It all adds up.

Speaking of support, don’t be surprised if you hear of a Heel needing a little extra in coming months.

The upcoming sked: State, Maryland, Florida State and Duke follow. Speaking of the sked, the Raleigh paper says it won’t work. The screwed up mess, where some teams will only face one another once a season and rotate around doesn’t jibe. They’re just now figuring this out? Give me a break. ACC expansion blows. It’s the absolute worst thing to happen to the Tobacco Road league in 50 years.

I’m torn over tonight’s Duke/Wake Forest game, but I’m loving the gnashing of teeth I’m hearing out of Cameron. The Dookies are whining about getting their groove back. I want Dook to lose, always. But I wouldn’t necessarily mind a Wake loss, because that would put Carolina in first place in the conference and further damage any claim Wake might have to a No. 1 seed in the NCAAs.

The NCAA seedings are crucial, because the first round South game will be played in Greensboro. We’ll take all the homecourt advantage we can get.

Photo credits: Sports Illustrated, College Basketball Edition; the one with Rashad on the cover

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1
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1 Comment

  1. Dave February 21, 2005

    Keith’s piece was excellent!



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