CHAPEL HILL — Roy Williams during his weekly radio show on Monday night had strong words for North Carolina fans who sold their tickets behind the Tar Heels’ bench to UNLV fans in Las Vegas during UNC’s trip there for the Las Vegas Invitational (see photos from the game).
Asked on Tuesday to elaborate on his comments, Williams didn’t back down. He said it was “disappointing” that UNC fans had sold tickets they had obtained through the Rams Club, the UNC athletic booster organization.
In other news, Harrison Barnes said he plans to practice today and his injury will be re-evaluated after the session.
Here’s what Williams said about opposing fans on Tuesday:
“It’s frustrating, it’s disappointing. Do you think ESPN likes Fox to be successful? You think Nike likes Under Armour to be successful? I mean, I’m competing out there. I don’t like our fans to help the other team by either giving or selling their tickets. That’s disappointing. And to do it right beside our families, you know, that’s the biggest thing. And then to have somebody that’s just negative, negative, negative right in five feet of an assistant coach’s wife for two nights.
“You know you get tired of that. But it’s something that’s always bothered me. It will always bother me. A hundred years ago I’m watching in Lawrence, Kansas, and North Carolina’s playing North Carolina State and there were five million red shirts in the crowd. And if I’d had a BB gun, five million red shirts would have had a burned rear end. Because I just don’t like those kinds of things. I mean, seriously. You guys like it when all the Internet people beat you on a story? I mean, that’s what it is. It’s competition. And if you were my friend, you are not going to help the competition.”
Williams was referring to the 2002 North Carolina-N.C. State game at the Smith Center, where the Wolfpack beat the Tar Heels in front of thousands of red-clad Wolfpack fans. As Williams spoke, a tape recorder begin emitting a high-pitched noise that interrupted him.
“Must be a State fan,” Williams said of the interruption. “Or a UNLV [fan]. Or maybe it’s a Ram’s Club member.”
Williams continued …
“Steve’s over here saying stop, stop, stop,” he said, referencing UNC basketball spokesman Steve Kirschner. “Guys, I’m serious. I’m in Lawrence, Kansas, watching that game and there was 5,000 red shirts in this arena. That bothers me. And it should bother you. Seriously, you think about it. The Internet people – you guys enjoy them? Be honest. You don’t enjoy that stuff. Nike does not like Under Armour. Nationwide does not like State Farm. Coca-Cola does not like Pepsi.
“It’s competition. So if you are my friend, then be my friend.”
Williams on Monday during his radio show harshly criticized UNC fans for selling their tickets.
“I am not friendly with anybody else on the other team and for some of our fans to get their tickets through the Rams Club and sell their tickets to UNLV boosters that are sitting right behind our families, I don’t like that,” Williams said. “And if the shoe fits, wear it. I don’t care who it is, I’ll tell the sucker face-to-face, I do not like that, will not like that and don’t ever forget it.”
A fan who Williams described as “negative” also drew his ire.
“Do not come back to my games,” Williams said. “Don’t act like you’re supporting us. Don’t act like you’re supporting us by showing up. If all you’re going to do is sit there and be so negative and yell negative things and say negative things beside one of our coaches’ wives.”