Sports News Without Access, Favor, Or Discretion

North Carolina Tar Heels

1. From Pine Time To Twine Time. It's 651.63 miles from the Dean E. Smith Center to the RCA Dome, but each 3-pointer from former walk-on benchwarmer Wes Miller draws the defending national champs 19 feet, 9 inches closer. Number 22 may be half the player Ol' 44 Larry Miller was, but everybody on The Hill knows where they can find Carolina's X-Factor come game time: right smack dab between the arcs. The James Madison transfer has made 67 shots this season. Of those 67 successful attempts, an Allan Ray-eye-popping 61 of those have been treys. That's right: Wes Miller — your sister's favorite scrapper — has made all of SIX two-point shots all season. He's gritty, he's gutty and he's got the long-range shot you wish you had in intramurals. Eat your heart out, Scott Cherry.

2. Eagle Scout. Heading into the ACC tourney, the Heels were hot, and members of the USA TODAY/ESPN coaches' Top 10 for the first time all season. Sure, mighty UConn was atop the heap with a whopping 30 No. 1 ballots, but there was one quiet holdout who refused to come Connecticut's way when it came time to rock the vote. Just who was that masked man? The coach who penetrated and pitched a precious No. 1 vote to 10th-ranked Carolina? None other than Coppin State Eagles coach Ron "Fang" Mitchell, a John Chaney disciple and former proprietor of the New Jersey-based biz we all will come to love in due time: Mr. Fang's Athletic Attire.

3. The Third Noel. Central Florida (RPI: 190) has sophomore Dave Noel. UNC-Wilmington (RPI: 27) showcases junior Dave Noel. But only North Carolina (RPI: 8) has senior Dave Noel. Not surprisingly, The Third Noel is fluent in French. "Noel," in fact, is French. But The Third Noel? The one who lives in The Triangle? He is not French. The Third Noel hails from Durham — yes, that Durham. He is a triple-threat athlete: a swingman and former wide receiver who threw out the first pitch for the Durham Bulls and their 2005 Triple-A season. The Third Noel is, as The Second would have it, the Third: David Noel III. He averaged three points in his third season in Chapel Hill. He wears No. third-y four and weighs two hundred third-y two pounds. He is the third option in Carolina's motion offense, just ahead of three-point specialist Wes Miller. Word to The Third Noel. — Brian Styers

Share This Story