Saturday, January 14, 2012

Perhaps Stilman White is one of the stars of the North Carolina basketball team

Stilman White is a freshman basketball player at a major college program. He was playing in a game today in which his team was losing, and the play-by-play account states that White attempted a three-point shot with eight seconds left in the game.

He missed.

Not that the shot would have made a lot of difference anyway, since his team - the University of North Carolina - was being beaten badly.

And not that his coach, Roy Williams, said anything to White after he missed the shot.

Williams, you see, was not on the court any more. Nor were most of White's teammates.

Yes, you read that correctly. North Carolina was losing the game so badly, most of the team had left for the safety of the locker room.

The [Florida State] Seminoles (11-6, 2-1) started the second half on a 30-8 run to take a 66-36 lead. Harrison Barnes scored 15 points and Zeller added 14 for North Carolina (15-3, 2-1), which finished 4 of 21 from 3-point range.

[North Carolina coach Roy] Williams took his team - except for five walk-ons who finished the game - from the court with 14.2 seconds left in expectation of the court-storming by the Florida State fans.

"We just tried to be cautious," Williams explained. "It's been shown that's it not always been safe in some scenarios."

[Florida State coach Leonard] Hamilton said he had suggested Williams remove the players as a precaution.

While I'm sure that Coach Hamilton was concerned for the safety of the students, what about the five students that remained? What did that say about them? Deadspin made it clear:

Florida State Upset North Carolina, But What We Really Learned Is That Walk-Ons Are Expendable

I learned about this whole episode from Edward Owen, who shared the Deadspin article and added an editorial comment of his own, which read in part:

Roy Williams is a piece of work.

I was unable to learn the names of the other four North Carolina players, but those four and Stilman White demonstrated more teamwork than the so-called leaders of the team.
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