Tar Heel Times
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Five observations: Wisconsin beats North Carolina

In the end, Wisconsin was too strong. The Badgers are resilient. Sam Dekker played like a top-20 pick. Guys such as Zak Showalter made key plays. Wisconsin isn't a team. It's a program. It came together in a difficult stretch, relied on its experience and overcame a good North Carolina team that should be proud of its effort. (ESPN.com)

Top-seeded Wisconsin hangs on to beat North Carolina 79-72

Sam Dekker scored a career-high 23 points, Frank Kaminsky added 19 and top-seeded Wisconsin rallied in the final 10 minutes to hold off North Carolina 79-72 Thursday night and advance to the final eight of the NCAA Tournament. Brice Johnson and Justin Jackson scored 15 points each for the fourth-seeded Tar Heels (26-12), who got within one with 4:21 remaining but couldn't retake the lead. (ESPN.com)

Lucas: Rapid Reactions - Wisconsin

The game changed during a two-minute stretch 32 minutes into the game. Nate Britt's free throws gave Carolina a 60-56 lead with 7:09 left. Carolina went zone defensively, and great Wisconsin ball movement patiently probed that zone before finding Frank Kaminsky for a three-pointer that started a 9-0 Badger run. Wisconsin would never trail again on the way to a 79-72 win that ends the Tar Heel season. (GoHeels.com)

Box Score: Wisconsin 79, North Carolina 72

View the complete box score from North Carolina's season-ending loss to the Wisconsin Badgers in the NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen in Los Angeles: (View Box Score)

Lucas: Rapid Reactions (Halftime Edition)

Solid half of basketball by Carolina to take a 33-31 lead into the break. The Tar Heels turned it over just twice and were able to push the pace just enough to get some easy baskets in transition. Carolina ended the half scoring on six of its final eight possessions. They struggled early to keep Wisconsin off the offensive glass, then cleaned up the box outs for the better part of the half. (GoHeels.com)

Official UNC, Wisconsin accounts adorably battle it out on Twitter before the game

North Carolina and Wisconsin clearly got a bit restless in anticipation of tonight’s NCAA tournament Sweet 16 game. The official Twitter accounts for both schools got competition started early when they got into a very cute Twitter battle that turned into a friendly social media version of “Bring It On.” (Washington Post)

A closer look at Wisconsin and the keys for the Tar Heels

North Carolina is much more comfortable playing at a faster pace, with its 67-65 victory in a 61-possession game against 13th-seeded Harvard and an 87-78 win in a 77-possession contest against fifth-seeded Arkansas showing the contrast. Williams has no illusions of speeding up Wisconsin, which takes better care of the ball than anyone in the country, so the Tar Heels must limit their own turnovers and rebound the Badgers’ misses. (Fayetteville Observer)

Photo: UNC Legend James Worthy Had Breakfast With The Tar Heels This Morning

In preparation for their bout against the Badgers, Roy Williams’ squad had breakfast with one of their program’s all-time greatest players. The Tar Heels met with James Worthy this morning. The three-time NBA champion played in Chapel Hill from 1979-82 before going on to star with the Los Angeles Lakers. (College Spun)

With Meeks hurting, North Carolina needs Johnson to step up

With Kennedy Meeks questionable for tonight's NCAA Tournament game against Wisconsin , North Carolina faces more questions concerning another forward. Will Brice Johnson display the kind of scoring prowess he exhibited during the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament? Or will Johnson, a junior from Orangeburg , S.C. , remain in his current offensive funk? (Winston-Salem Journal)

Sweet 16 awaits Tobacco Road teams

These are precious days in our state. Sweet days. Days to bask in basketball. Duke, North Carolina and N.C. State have all played their way into the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament. Hope is alive and well on Tobacco Road, with tip-offs tonight and Friday. Our state will stop and watch. (Greensboro News & Record)

Sam Perkins: Road to the Final Four

Some teams may be happy to be there, but if you want to win a championship you have to look at the Sweet Sixteen as just another round. When we were playing we wanted to go all the way, so we didn’t think about it as the Sweet Sixteen, we thought about it as a game against Alabama. That’s the mindset you have to have going in. I’m sure the coaches are all saying the same thing. (Sam Perkins Blog)

Tar Heels, Gamecocks Meet Again In Women's Sweet 16

Top-seeded South Carolina earned a conveniently short trip for its NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearance. Its opponent - fourth-seeded North Carolina, the lowest seed left in the region - got an even shorter one. The Gamecocks (32-2) and Tar Heels (26-8) meet in the tournament for the second straight year in a Greensboro Region semifinal Friday night. (GoHeels.com)

Dean Smith remembers players in will

Dean Smith got a chance to thank his players one last time. The former North Carolina coach, who died last month at 83, directed his trust in his will to give $200 to every letter winner who played for him during his 36 seasons as head coach at the school. "We never expected anything like this," said Jeb Barlow, who lettered at UNC from 1980-1982. "But it doesn't surprise me that this was done." (ESPN.com)

UNC Open Football Scrimmage Set For March 28

UNC will conduct an open spring football scrimmage in Chapel Hill on Saturday, March 28, at the Navy practice fields (across the street from baseball's Boshamer Stadium). The scrimmage is free and begins at 10 a.m. Inflatable games will be set up on the adjacent field hockey turf along with booths, food trucks and concessions. Following the scrimmage, fans are encouraged to attend the UNC baseball game vs. Miami at 3 p.m. (GoHeels.com)

A Gift from Coach Smith

Shortly after Dean Smith’s passing on Feb. 7, all of his former lettermen received a simple request. “They asked us to update our addresses,” said former UNC guard Terrance Newby, who played at UNC from 1997-00 . “I thought it was so they could keep us informed about the arrangements and anything else going on as far as memorials.” Turns out it was one last gift from Smith to his players. (Inside Carolina)

Extra Points: Train Wreck

Railroad accidents often occur when two trains are headed at warp speed in the same direction and some imbecile in the conductor’s seat runs his train into the side of another on merging tracks. That’s the idea behind “Train Wreck,” a ball stripping-and-recovery drill favored by new Tar Heel defensive coordinator Gene Chizik and his staff that’s been a mainstay halfway through spring practice. (GoHeels.com)

Dean Smith requested $200 be sent to each of his former players in will

The late Dean Smith, who died last month, willed his trust to send $200 to each of his former North Carolina basketball players, Tim Breedlove, who wrote the letter, confirmed to SI. In the letter Smith's former players received from Miller McNeish & Breedlove, PA, it was revealed that Smith requested each of his former players be sent a $200 check with the message, "enjoy a dinner out compliments of Coach Dean Smith." (Sports Illustrated)

A Brief History of North Carolina Playing in “Special” Apparel

North Carolina and Jordan Brand attempted to break the Internet with the Tar Heels’ new kicks for the Sweet 16. But, as recent history shows, maybe gimmicked uniforms are a bad idea for Carolina. Here’s a recent timeline of “different” uniforms, and how the Tar Heels played in them. (Tar Heel Depot)

Preview: UNC vs Wisconsin, Sweet Sixteen

The contrasting styles of these two teams has been the major focus of discussion heading into Thursday's matchup. Wisconsin likes to slow the game down, use the majority of the shot clock, and get the right shot. The Badgers take care of the ball and shoot a high percentage. It is a formidable matchup for the Tar Heels who like to push the ball and get the maximum amount of possession. (Carolina Blue)

The Story Behind The Time Michael Jordan Hit His Head Against The Backboard During A Game

The play was called a goaltend, and Johnny Dawkins got two points. But that’s not important. What is important is that Michael Jordan hit his dang head on the backboard trying to block a running hook shot. “Every once in awhile somebody would do something in a game where you’d go, ‘Shoot, I’ve never seen that before.” Former Duke player and current ESPN analyst Jay Bilas told UPROXX Sports. (Uproxx)

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