ACC Media Day
Well, things have finally kicked into gear with practice starting last week. Today was ACC media day and as you probably expected, ESPN has been all over it. They held a live chat with the ACC coaches earlier, and below is the excerpt from Roy Williams’ appearance:
Larry B (Baltimore) Coach who do you think is the most dangerous player in the ACC this year?
Roy: Wow, there are a lot. Irving, Singler of Duke, Leslie of NC State, Delaney of VA Tech just to name a few. It all depends on which team we are playing that night because each team has at least one dangerous player.
Matt (Nashville) Coach, I hated to see you go through that type of season last year. What do you think is the biggest key to rebounding from that type of year and how good do you think UNC can really be this year?
Roy: Thank you, I hated to see it also. We need to stay healthy; we only have 10 scholarship players on the roster this season. Last season, scoring was a big problem for us but with this year’s team, I think we will be able to score for freely. We have a group of kids that can get to the basket, shoot from the outside and score inside.
Nick (Virginia Beach) Coach Williams, do you forsee Harrison Barnes playing in the post at all, barring any injuries?
Roy: Harrison is a skilled offensive player and we will post him up against smaller guys. He his primarily a premier player but he will get time in the post depending on who is guarding him.
Nick (Virginia Beach) Coach Williams, has any particular player stepped up thus far in practice as a vocal team leader?
Roy: I thought Will Graves was going to be a fantastic leader for us but as you know he’s no longer with our team. Now I see Tyler Zeller and Larry Drew will stepping up and being leaders of this team. Harrison Barnes is also vocal player and will step up when needed.
Sean (Blacksburg) Coach Williams, beside Duke which ACC teams do you see as the toughest games this season?
Roy: I think VA Tech with all five startes back will be a tough team. NC State has a well rounded team. Overall, there are a lot of teams in the ACC will be tough. I wouldn’t want to see any ACC team on a night that I’m not playing well.
Brian (CHAPEL HILL) Coach, what are the keys to challenging Duke for the ACC title this season?
Roy: The number one thing for us is to stay healthy. Next we have to score and rebound. I think this season we will be a better scoring team than last season’s team but it’s always tough to beat a Duke team. We have to come with our A game.
Hayden (Logan, Utah) what is your strategy to prevent one and done type players aka mr Wall?
Roy: I don’t have a strategy to prevent them. Marvin Williams and Brandon Wright both left after one season and they were both great players as well as great students. Marvin won a National Championship his freshman year. At UNC, we have to recruit the best players. Both one and done and four year players.
John (Cincinnati) HOF Coach Roy Williams, I think the signing of Knox is huge to give some guys rest and he can take up space down low. How do you feel about your young guards and the pressure of playing in the ACC?
Roy: I think you’re right; Justin will help us up front. Our freshmen are gifted but they are inexperienced. We understand that there will be some ups and downs and they have to understand the too. When down, we have to keep pushing. That’s the only way to get through it.
Considering the same person asked two questions, I wish I would have seen the chat early enough to get in on it. If you don’t like reading, then there is also a video interview, via ESPN.
And lastly, in case you wanted to know when the Heels will appear on the ESPN family of networks, I have perused the 17-page schedule and found the best parts below:
Thursday, Nov. 18 – Puerto Rico Tip-off – UNC vs. Hofstra, 5 p.m. ESPN2
Tuesday, Nov. 30 – ACC/Big Ten Challenge – UNC @ Illinois, 9:30 p.m. ESPN
Wednesday, Dec. 7 – UNC @ Evansville, 7 p.m. ESPNU
Tuesday, Dec. 21 – William & Mary @ UNC, 7 p.m. ESPN2
Tuesday, Dec. 28 – UNC vs. Rutgers (New York – I’m assuming MSG) 9 p.m. ESPN2
Thursday, Jan. 13 – Virginia Tech @ UNC, 9 p.m. ESPN or ESPN2
Wednesday, Jan. 26 – UNC @ Miami, 7:30 p.m. ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Jan. 29 – NC State @ UNC, 2:00 p.m. ESPN
Wednesday, Feb. 9 – UNC @ Duke, 9:00 p.m. ESPN
Saturday, Feb. 19 – Boston College @ UNC, 4 p.m. ESPN
Wednesday, March 2 – UNC @ Florida St., 7 p.m. ESPN or ESPN2