Perspective On This Season
Eddy Landreth provides some perspective on this season.
I agree with everything he says. Here are the highlights.
So, once this team can put some distance between Sunday's disappointment, some indisputable facts should surface.
1) Almost any other team in the country would have collapsed under the weight of losing its top seven scorers from a year ago while carrying the flag of being the defending national champion.
2) Rather than collapse, the Tar Heels thrived.
3) This group did not win a national championship, but it did add the next level to the foundation of Williams' program.
4) The freshmen on this team turned out to be superior ballplayers to what many people expected.
5) Hansbrough is one of the finest collegiate players to wear Carolina blue.
Duke finished first in the regular season, won the ACC Tournament and has advanced further in the NCAA Tournament than UNC did, all expected results from a team with two first-team All-Americans and a bench full of McDonald's All-Americans.
But Williams took his freshmen and unlikely veterans and defeated the Blue Devils in Durham on Senior Night. UNC should have beaten Duke twice, but inexperience got the better of the Heels in Chapel Hill.
What this season has shown is the rivalry is level again. From here on, Williams and the Tar Heels will look at Duke eye-to-eye and not blink. Carolina hasn't been able to truly say that since 1998.