Friday, February 20, 2009

The Fifth Corner had moved...

. Friday, February 20, 2009

This site has gone to a new platform...

Check it out here: The new & improved Fifth Corner

I hope you like it and will keep following me there!

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

HC Williams reaches 200th games in the ACC...

. Wednesday, February 18, 2009

...but how is he doing in the all time wins ranking?

With head coach Roy Williams having coached in his 200th game in the Atlantic Coast Conference against Miami (Fl), and having the most wins of anyone in their first 200 games in the conference got me to think about how he was doing in the overall wins. So, looking around a bit, I found the Top 10 active head coaches, where coach Williams is 8th, and put them here below. You will find the name of the coach, the age, where he is coaching and the games won.

Here is the list of the Top 10 winningest active coaches:

Mike Krzyzewski (62 year old) - Duke: 823
Jim Calhoun (66 year old) - Connecticut: 798
Jim Boeheim (64 year old) - Syracuse: 790
Bob Huggins (55 year old) - West Virginia: 633
Tom Penders (64 year old) - Houston: 624
Gary Williams (63 year old) - Maryland: 620
Homer Drew (64 year old) - Valparaiso: 600
Roy Williams (58 year old) - North Carolina: 583
Bo Ryan (61 year old) - Wisconsin: 572
Ben Braun (53 year old) - Rice: 564

Some interesting thoughts here. First, there isn't much gap between the first and the second spot, with Coach K having a lead of 25 games over Calhoun as of Monday, February 16th 2009. But, when you truly think about it, even if the Huskies were able to win five more games a season than the Blue Devils it would tie the two teams up when Calhoun is 71 and Krzyzewski is 67, making it evident that (barring any unpredictable things) even if the UConn coach was able to surpass the Duke one, by the time they retired Coach K would be back in the top spot. Same thing goes for Jim Boeheim, who is two years younger than his counterpart at UConn, but ten games behind him.

The fourth placed coach right now is Bob Huggins at West Virginia, who is 55, but is also 190 games behind the first place Krzyzewski. With the probability that WVU isn't going to win as many games as Duke, that number is only going to go up. If Huggins can win seven more games this season, thing that should happen, he will then have another three years before he reaches the seven hundred plateau. Dropping down some, and checking on where head coach Roy Williams sits at the age of 58, the first mark is pretty simple, as he is 17 games from being at 600, and even if he was able to win all the games that could be available to win, meaning the regular season, the ACC Post Season tournament and the NCAA Tournament, he would still not get there this season. However it is quite obvious that coach Williams will be at the 600 mark very early into the 2009-10 season.

Look at the numbers, but more importantly, look at the names. Yes, there are several teams that are household names with casual fans, but there are also some that aren't, such as Rice or Houston or even Valparaiso. But what stands out to me is this, how does it happen that there are three coaches over or close to the 800 mark and then that drop off to 633? It feels like there is a generation missing, like generation 700 wins. I also have to say that I would have thought that the top active coach would have more than 564 wins, not sure how many he should have had, but more than that number.

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Another game and of course another rivalry...


...when NC State comes to the Dean Dome.

Tonight at the Dean Dome there will be another rivalry game for the Tar Heels. It's North Carolina State (14-9, 4-6 in the ACC) versus third ranked North Carolina (23-2, 9-2 in the ACC) in round two for the season. And while this game should be for the Heels to take if they want to, do not think that the Wolfpack team that comes to town tonight is the same one that Carolina beat on January 30th. On one side NC State has won three of their last games since facing UNC, including Wake. On the other side the Heels have won 11 out of 12 matches against their in-state rivals. But what I am really wondering about this game is the new equation of UNC...

And that equation is T to the 3. In other words: Is Ty Lawson going to be healthy? Is Tyler Hansbrough over the concussion he received against Miami? Is Tyler Zeller going to be on the floor? Is he going to make the difference down the line? I guess we will have answers to the first three questions tonight, but for the fourth one we'll have to wait until March Madness comes along. In the last game between these two teams, where North Carolina won 93 to 76, Hansbrough had 31 points, while five Tar Heels scored in double figures. This is due to the fact that while NC State might be a better offensive squad of late, they are still one of the worst when it comes to defense.

However, as we all know, when we talk rivalries and college basketball numbers and stats shouldn't be looked at too hard, what is needed to win these types of games is desire and willingness. Of late this Carolina squad has that, especially with a sparkling Ty Lawson leading the way as the floor general. As the junior point guard said in a quote yesterday about this game: “It’s one of our rivals, so if you can’t get excited for that, what can you get excited for?” I have to say that having followed UNC basketball for a long time I've had the chance to watch Lawson for three years, and the difference between this year and last is pretty visible.

After this game the Tar Heels will have four more games in the regular season, including the end of the season one with Duke at the Dean Dome. Then it will be off to the ACC Post Season tournament in Atlanta, Ga. and the NCAA Tournament. There is still lots of basketball to be played for these young men, with the core of them maybe on their last run as a Tar Heel. Watching them turning from youngsters from high school to players in Division I was something great, now starting the stretch run for the end of their road and towards the pro's sure has a weird feeling to it. So, do not over think what they do on the court, enjoy the game, enjoy them, as the times you will be able to see them is only getting smaller.

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Anywhere you look it's about the Ty's...


...Hansbrough, Zeller and Lawson, the triple combo!

For the game tonight it's going to be Ty to the second, or almost. What do I mean? It sounds like that freshman seven footer Tyler Zeller is going to be back on the court tonight against North Carolina State. And while this Tyler isn't going to be at his best, no one would be after sitting out 13 weeks and only practicing two, Zeller is not the only Ty that isn't at his best. From an article (one of many) it was clearly stated that Tyler Hansbrough suffered a minor concussion. While at the web site Buster Sports it seems that Andrew Jones believes the problem might be that Hansbrough is still dealing with shin splints. But wait, on the discussion of Ty's, we also have the speedy point guard to talk about.

Ty Lawson, who as we know played versus Miami while not feeling well was named the ACC Player of the Week. This is the second time this year that the speedy guard from Chapel Hill receives this award. Lawson averaged 23.0 points, 4.5 assists, shot 15 for 23 from the floor, 5 for 9 from 3 pt range and 11 for 11 from the charity stripe as UNC took two ACC road wins at Duke and Miami.

I have to say that in reading all the articles about Zeller coming back, the quote that sticks in my mind is the one from head coach Roy Williams:

“If it was 15 years ago, I wouldn't even let a young man consider giving up a year for five regular-season games and whatever postseason games we might have,” coach Roy Williams said Tuesday. “But he would really like to help this team; he would really like to play.”

Doesn't this show how much the world of college sports has changed? It's pretty simple to understand why coach Williams will let the freshman play. Because the Hall of Fame coach probably knows that he won't have him for more than four years, if that many. For an old Tar Heel and lover of this game knowing that Zeller is coming back is great, but on the other hand knowing why isn't as much.

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Once again it's ranking and bracketing...


...and once again UNC is a top seed.

I am way late on checking on the new rankings from both the main stream ones (AP & ESPN/USA Today) and the best of the best for bloggers, CollegeHoopsNet. North Carolina stayed put on all three polls, with the two media ones keeping the Heels third and CHN having them second. They are the only Top 5 team for the ACC, joining UConn who is first (and yes I know they lost), Oklahoma, Pittsburgh (who beat the Huskies) and Memphis (for the AP) and Michigan State (ESPN/USA Today). CHN has UConn, UNC, OU, Pitt and Memphis as the Top 50 teams.

The other teams from the conference to join North Carolina are the following:

Wake: AP- 8th ESPN/USA Today- 8th CHN- 7th
Duke: AP- 9th ESPN/USA Today- 9th CHN- 8th
Clemson: AP- 13th ESPN/USA Today- 13th CHN- 10th

As you can see there is no difference between the two main stream media when it comes to the ACC teams, and very little between them and CHN's. This shows me, for what I understand of all of this, that this season the ACC is very top heavy, and while Carolina is the clear leader right now, being two games ahead of anyone with five to go in the year, the middle of the pack is pretty big and it should be interesting to see how many squads make the NCAA Tournament. If it was to start now let's see what Joe Lunardi's bracketology as well as Shawn Seigel's brackets would say about the ACC.

The World Leader of Sport has eight teams from the Atlantic Coast Conference. North Carolina is the number one seed of the MidWest according to Lunardi. In that bracket there is only one more ACC team, Boston College, an eleven seed. In the East bracket (UConn = top seed) there are two as well, third seed Duke and eighth seed Florida State. In the West, where Pitt is the top seed, there is Clemson (a 3 seed) and Miami (Fl) (a 11 seed). In the South brackets, which has Oklahoma as the top seed, Wake Forest is a two seed while Virginia Tech is a nine seed. Just for fun, the "best conference" still only has eight teams in the tournament according to Joe Lunardi, so much for the Big East being the end all in college basketball this year.

College Hoops Net has seven teams from the ACC. Once again, no change for the Heels, as they are the top seed on CHN's brackets as well. Duke and Clemson are both two seeds however (Lunardi has both of them as three seed). Wake, who ESPN has a two seed, on CHN has been placed as a three seed. Florida State is an eight seed, while Boston College is one step down at nine. The last team for CHN is Virginia Tech, who comes in as an eleven seed. I will finish this post with a find from the internet, where on FanHouse Bracketology Busters: No. 1 Pretender talks about a top seed, Oklahoma, being overrated, while a Big East team, West Virginia, being underrated, you decide!

The fun part about all of this? Is that next week all the polls, the brackets, and the experts will do it all over again, and I just love watching all of this unfold.

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Heels in the League (02/17/09)


Having finally caught up in this daily post of mine, let's get back into the swing of things and look at last night's games for the ex Carolina players in the National Basketball Association by doing my post called "Heels in the Leauge". The venue for the first night back since the All Star game was pretty big and there is plenty of carolina blue in it.

First game of the night was the match up between the visiting Charlotte Bobcats and the Orlando Magic, played in Amway Arena. In this one it was ex Heel Raymond Felton getting 42 minutes, while his team mate Sean May didn't play once again. The ex Carolina point guard had a good outing, getting a double double, scoring 22 points (10 for 21) and adding 10 boards. Felton has registered 5 assists and one steal on the night, but it was his last shot in the fourth quarter he would want back. If that shot would have gone the Bobcats would have gone home winners, but instead with the miss the game went into OT and Orlando (39-13, 21-6 home) won the contest, defeating Charlotte (21-32, 6-18 away) 107 to 102 behind Dwight Howard's 45 pts/19 boards/8 block performance.

Raymond Felton goes up for a shot in front of Courtney Lee during the overtime period of an NBA basketball game in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2009. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts <~> Video Highlight

In the next game it's a match up between two ex Tar Heels. For the visiting squad, the Minnesota Timberwolves, it's Raymond Felton & Sean May's ex team mate Rashad McCants getting eight minutes in all and scoring three points from them on a one for five shooting night. The ex Heel guard also had one rebound, one assist and a steal, while committing a TO.

For the home team of the Washington Wizards it was Antawn Jamison getting a double double off of 41 minutes played. The ex Heel forward scored 29 points (10 for 17 ~ 9 for 11 from FTs) while pulling down 11 boards. Jamison also had two assists, but turned the ball over six times in the game. In the end it was still Washington (12-42, 9-19 home) wins this one by the final of 111 to 103 over Minnesota (17-35, 9-18 away).

Antawn Jamison is double teamed by Kevin Love and Mike Miller during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2009, in Washington. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts <~> Video Highlight

The third game of the night with a touch of carolina blue in it was held at the Palace of Auburn Hills between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Detroit Pistons. Of course, this means find ex Heel big man Rasheed Wallace. In this one Wallace plays 34 minutes scoring 10 points and adding eight boards to his total. The center also gets two blocks and nothing more on the night, while Milwaukee (27-29, 11-20 away) defeats Detroit (27-25, 14-14 home) by the final of 92 to 86. Interesting thing is that the Vegas line for this game was Pistons -61/2.

Box Score <~> Shot Charts <~> Video Highlight

Next game with an ex Carolina player in it is the match up between New Jersey Nets and the Houston Rockets. A game that the Las Vegas oddsmakers have the Rockets favored by 61/2 points. For the visiting Nets it's Vince Carter getting 35 minutes at the shooting guard spot, where he would score 30 points, along with four rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block. The ex Heel would also have three turnovers on the night, but all of that would not matter as Houston (33-21, 20-6 home) crushed New Jersey (24-30, 13-14 away) by 26 points, with the final tally being 114 to 88.

Vince Carter goes to the basket around Yao Ming during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2009, in Houston. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts <~> Video Highlight

Last game of the night with a touch of carolina blue is the one between east coast Atlanta Hawks and the west coast LA Lakers, a game that has the Lakers as a 81/2 pts favorite.. For the cross country visitors it's Marvin Williams who gets 35 minutes but doesn't do too much with them at the STAPLES Center, scoring just 10 points and getting three rebounds, two assists, 2 steals and two blocks on the night. In the end it was the Lakers (43-10, 25-4 home) winning this one, led by a triple double from Pau Gasol, by the final of 96 to 83 over the Hawks (31-22, 12-16 away).

Marvin Williams drives to the basket past Luke Walton and Pau Gasol in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2009, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Gus Ruelas)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts <~> Video Highlight

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Heels in the League (02/11/09)

. Tuesday, February 17, 2009

As the NBA restarts tonight I am very happy to be able to say that I will be caught up and from tomorrow on the (not so) daily post about the ex Tar Heels in the NBA will be done on a real daily basis and will have some extra features in it. But right now I am dealing with the games from 02/11/09, where there were eleven games with five ex Heels playing. So here is the next edition of the post "Heels in the League".

In the first game with ex Tar Heels it's a head to head match between the Washington Wizards and the Charlotte Bobcats played in the Time Warner Cable Arena. For the visiting squad it's ex National Player of the Year Antawn Jamison playing 40 minutes and almost getting a double double in that time. The ex Heel forward got 23 points (8 for 19) while grabbing nine boards in the game. Jamison also got a pair of assists, one steal a block and turned over the ball three times in the game.

Antawn Jamison drives to the basket as Vladmir Radmanovic defends during the second half of an NBA basketball game on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Rick Havner)

For the home team it was the duo of Raymond Felton and Sean May. The ex Heel point guard got 45 minutes on the night and he too came close to a double double, going for 15 points (7 for 16) while dishing out nine assists and grabbing eight boards. Felton also had five steals and one block on the night, while he did have four turn overs against Washington. The big man only got three minutes of playing time, where he scored on his only bucket, getting two points, and grabbing a rebound, but also committing a TO. In the end it was the Bobcats (21-31, 15-14 home) winning this one by 12, defeating the Wizards (11-42, 3-23 away) 101 to 89.

Raymond Felton dunks over the Caron Butler during the first half of an NBA basketball game on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Rick Havner)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts

In the second and last game of the day it's another head to head match up, with the visiting team being the Atlanta Hawks, where Marvin Williams played 32 minutes and had 11 points (4 for 9) while grabbing eight rebounds on the night. The ex Heel and national champion also had one block while committing a turnover in the game.

For the home squad, the Detroit Pistons, it's Rasheed Wallace playing in the middle for 25 minutes in this one. The ex pupil of Dean Smith scored just nine points and got seven rebounds on the night. He also had one block versus the Hawks, while turning over the ball twice in the game. When it was all said and done at the Palace at Auburn Hills it was Atlanta (31-21, 12-15 away) winning the game, as they defeated Detroit (27-24, 14-13 home) by the final tally of 99 to 95, holding off a 4th quarter rally by the Pistons.

Box Score <~> Shot Charts

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Monday, February 16, 2009

Heels in the League (02/10/09)

. Monday, February 16, 2009

As I keep trying to catch up on this (and should be able to do so quickly) here is the 02/10/09 edition of my (not so) daily post entitled "Heels in the League". There are many ex Carolina players in this one as there were nine games on tap in the NBA schedule.

In the first game of the night it's a match up between old school Tar Heels and new school. For the visiting squad, the Washington Wizards, it's the old school being proudly rappresented by ex NPOY Antawn Jamison. The ex pupil of Dean Smith played 39 minutes in this one, getting a double double in it. With 17 points (5-16 ~ 7 for 9 FTs) and 12 rebounds the 6'9" power forward also got a steal while turning over the ball three times in the game.

For the home squad it's Marvin Williams for the new school part of the match up. In this on the national champion doesn't do much in the 29 minutes of playing time. The forward for the Atlanta Hawks just got five points (2 for 10) and 5 rebounds on the night. Other than that the ex Heel didn't have anything on his box score for the night, however Williams and his team mates did have the W when it was all said and done as Atlanta (30-21, 19-6 home) defeated Washington (11-41, 3-22 away) by the final of 111 to 90.

Box Score <~> Shot Charts

In the second game of the night with a touch of carolina blue it's Jamison's Tar Heel team mate, Vince Carter, who with his New Jersey Nets play host to the San Antonio Spurs at the IZOD Center. The ex Heel guard had decent night as he scored a team high 25 points (11 for 25) and grabbed six rebounds. Carter also dished out five asssits and only had one TO on the night. However, all of this was not enough as San Antonio (35-15, 17-8 away) won this one, beating New Jersey (24-29, 11-16 home) by 15, 108 to 93, thanks in grand part to the third quarter where the Spurs out scored the Nets 28 to 18.

Vince Carter holds off Tim Duncan as he goes up with a shot during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2009 in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts

In the next game it's a match up between the Toronto Raptors and the Minnesota Timberwolves played in the Target Center. In this one we should have seen ex national champ Rashad McCants, but he was a "DNP - Flu Like Symptoms" and so he didn't see action in this one. A shame, since after a long stretch of not seeing playing time the ex Heel guard was finally getting back into the mix of things with the team. As far as this game is concerned it was Toronto (20-34, 11-19 away) winning by eight, as they defeated Minnesota (17-34, 8-17 home) by the final tally of 110 to 102.

Box Score

In the last game for the night with a touch of carolina blue we have the Detroit Pistons heading to the United Center to take on the Chicago Bulls. In this one for the visiting team it's Rasheed Wallace, who got 33 minutes in all and totaled a double double with that time. The ex UNC big man scored 20 points (7 for 11 - 4 for 4 FTs) and grabbed 10 boards. Wallace also had three steals and two blocks, while giving up the ball just twice in the game. However, in the end, it was the home team to come out with a W, as the Bulls (23-29, 14-10 home) beat the Pistons (27-23, 13-11 away) 107 to 102 thanks to a 36 to 17 4th quarter.

Rasheed Wallace misses an inbound pass that was grabbed by Joakim Noah to end the second half of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2009, in Chicago. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

Box Score <~> Shot Charts

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