Thursday's UNC Links

Today's Carolina links from around the 'net ......

Carolina Basketball

North Carolina will have almost all the comforts of home again tonight in the NCAA Tournament, but won't feel the least little bit at ease. North Carolina will play Washington State in an East Regional semifinal at 7:27. The game at Bobcats Arena will match distinctive and clashing playing styles: The Tar Heels will want to play on the run and the Cougars will exhaust all their patience to get what they want.
A clash in styles on tap
The Winston Salem Journal

Choose your own adjective for Washington State's style of basketball -- efficient, patient, sound, effective. Go ahead and use the "b-word" if you'd like. The Cougars are used to that one, senior guard Derrick Low said Wednesday as Washington State prepared for its matchup tonight with North Carolina in the round of 16.
Cougars' defense should test Heels
The News and Observer

Coach Roy Williams gave his North Carolina basketball players another day off Monday, but once again, Deon Thompson refused to rest.
For UNC's Thompson, rest isn't part of plan
The News and Observer

Tonight's Sweet 16 match-up between North Carolina and Washington State will be a battle between the gas pedal and the brakes. With the NCAA tournament's most explosive offense running into its antithesis, a trip to the Elite Eight will be determined by which team can better impose its will.
UNC, Washington State is a battle of opposites
The Fayetteville Observer

The poster child for hang-in-there, keep-your-chin-up, you'll-get-your-chance and all those other bromides coaches toss at bench-warmers like so many bounce passes will begin tonight's East Region semifinals with his posterior planted firmly on a chair -- Quentin Thomas' standard pose for all but 10 occasions since he hit campusball and reality four years ago. Except this isn't a downbeat story.
A poster child for persevering
The Richmond Times

He's the guy in North Carolina's locker room who talks nearly every day with one-time teammate Marvin Williams, the man who has been part of more victories than any other player in school history and the last holdover from the Tar Heels' national title team in 2005. Quentin Thomas also might be as responsible as anyone not named Tyler Hansbrough for keeping the North Carolina juggernaut rolling through February.
Last UNC man standing
The Washington Times

On the team with everything, they are the last pieces of the championship puzzle. North Carolina proved in the ACC tournament that it can win games while getting next to nothing from power forwards Deon Thompson and Alex Stepheson. But when the sophomores from California are playing like they did last weekend in the NCAA first- and second-round games in Raleigh, the Tar Heels can look virtually unbeatable.
The No. 1 Tar Heels are good. But when these two get going, they're great.
The Virginian-Pilot

He has played down the advantage of playing the first two weekends of the NCAA Tournament in-state, but Tyler Hansbrough is grateful the team has been able to travel by bus. "I can't stand flying; it plays with my mind," said Hansbrough
Timeout with Tyler: Hansbrough is no fan of flying
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch

But tonight at Bobcats Arena in an East Regional semifinal, the Tar Heels face a quality opponent that has no intention of playing giddy-up and has shown the ability to put the brakes on teams that prefer a quicker pace.
If Washington State sets the pace, Tar Heels could have a tough time
The Asheville Citizen-Times

Washington State arrived in the N.C.A.A. tournament Round of 16 playing the kind of defensive-minded basketball that North Carolina Coach Roy Williams openly mocked years ago.
Cougars' Defense Makes Williams Defensive
The New York Times

Roy Williams has repeated the line so many times these past few weeks that by comparison, a month-old Twinkie seems fresh. So when the inevitable question came up early in his press conference Wednesday, the North Carolina basketball coach didn't hesitate in dusting it off and using it again.
Do Heels have unfair edge?
The Fayetteville Observer

Before the NCAA tournament began, former North Carolina guard Melvin Scott was arguing a point with Tar Heels sophomore Ty Lawson. "Dude," Scott said he told Lawson, "You guys are so much deeper than we were." Such conversations are common for Lawson and teammates on the top-seeded North Carolina team that will meet Washington State in the East Regional semifinals at Bobcats Arena at 7:27 p.m. today.
UNC in familiar footsteps?
The Charlotte Observer

There isn't a soul on North Carolina who questions the premise. The difference of opinion comes when the words "What makes" replace the "Is."
Junior Ginyard 'natural'for UNC
The Durham Herald-Sun

The last time a team kept North Carolina away from the basket, it almost won. Repeat, almost. And that doesn't count.
Watch for WSU to slow down the pace
The Durham Herald-Sun

It's not really a secret that Roy Williams isn't a huge fan of Washington State's plodding brand of basketball. A little backstory first: Dick Bennett led upstart Wisconsin to the Final Four in 2000, and the Badgers faced Big 10 rival Michigan State in the national semifinal game. The score at halftime was 19-17, leading some to decry the bruising styles of both teams.
Williams has the need for speed
The Durham Herald-Sun

North Carolina vs. Washington State. Unstoppable force, meet immovable object. "We are very different," said UNC forward Deon Thompson. "The opposite of one another."
Tar Heels face Clash of Tempos in Sweet 16
The Greensboro News-Record

His voice was soft, his answers deliberate as reporters crowded the North Carolina locker room Wednesday to get the Tar Heels' state-of-the-postseason address from junior All-American Tyler Hansbrough.
Hansbrough keeps swings to self
The News Tribune

If North Carolina needs a clutch shot this week, Wayne Ellington wants to take it. From the perimeter or in the lane, he said he'll be ready. The Tar Heels' 6-foot-4 sophomore guard isn't the same player who a year ago missed a three-point try that would have won a regional final in regulation against Georgetown. North Carolina lost in overtime and walked away as Georgetown celebrated a Final Four berth.
Ellington has applied himself in the clutch
The Louisville Courier-Journal

Derrick Low and Roy Williams almost were united in the same basketball program. But then Williams couldn't turn down Dean Smith a second time and left Kansas to rebuild North Carolina's fallen program. Low, whom Williams was recruiting at the time, eventually ended up in the Pacific Northwest at Washington State.
Williams, Low cross paths again
The Wilmington Star

Even while growing up in a tropical paradise, Derrick Low looked at the University of North Carolina as basketball heaven.
Derrick wanted to be like Mike
The Honolulu Advertiser

The question came to Roy Williams like a chest pass from point-blank range: "You're not a big fan of the Bennett style, are you?"
North Carolina coach bends a bit on Bennett style
The Seattle Times

Much has been made of North Carolina's travel schedule during the NCAA Tournament. Or the lack of one. The Tar Heels, seeded No. 1 in the East, played their first- and second-round games last week in Raleigh, N.C., less than 30 minutes from the Tar Heels' campus in Chapel Hill.
It's home sweet home for Heels
The Boston Globe

No team has waltzed into the NCAA tournament's round of 16 more often than North Carolina, which is making its 22nd appearance this year. That tradition was imprinted in the minds of Washington State's starters, a hodgepodge of lightly regarded and nominally recruited players, from the time they fell in love with the game.
Cougars Are Comfortable as Underdogs -- a Good Thing vs. UNC
The Washington Post

Inside Carolina Top Stories