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Off the cuff: Quentin Thomas, who failed to score, dished out an impressive seven assists in only 11 minutes of action.

This was the first and only game this year not to be televised. Between cable and satellite, I get maybe 800 channels and not one wanted to show the game. Some of us like 46-point victories. Perhaps the ACC needs a channel like the Big Ten has for games such as this.

The Wood man, one of the most renowned announcers in history, is evidently used to calling games when people can see the score and the time remaining on the TV screen.

There are still TV time outs, now called media time outs or official time outs, even when the game isn't televised. Used to not be that way but the thinking was to get the players used to it.

The stands were not full. I guess with Thanksgiving coming, with it being a weeknight game and with the 0-3 opponent, it's understandable. But with no TV, it was the only way to see it.

By the way, Spencer & Davis play for SC State but the Tar Heels didn't listen to any cries of Gimme Gimme Some Lovin'. Do a Google search.

Heels 110, Bulldogs 64
Steals, forced turnovers, free throws highlight romp

South Carolina State, playing the Tar Heels for the first time ever, was smothered by Carolina, which forced an amazing 32 turnovers and stole the ball 15 times. UNC tossed in 29 free throws, including 12 by Tyler Hansbrough, as the Tar Heels beat the Bulldogs bad, 110-64. (11/20).

Coach Roy Williams said the Tar Heels were more "gifted" than the Bulldogs and he thought the Tar Heels put in a "workmanlike" effort. He said the offense wasn't smooth and rhythmic but then again how can it be when the Bulldogs are fouling and fouling? Four SC State players were saddled with three fouls each in the first half alone and three eventually fouled out.

It actually looked as if it might be a close game during the first five minutes as the Bulldogs drilled a couple of three-pointers and the Tar Heels started off missing five of their first six shots. SC State was up 8-4 when the Heels went on a 9-0 run sparked by Wayne Ellington, who drilled a three and seconds later dunked one.

The Bulldogs hung in for a couple more minutes and trailed only 16-14 when the Tar Heels once again went on a 9-0 run to take a 25-14 advantage, again sparked by Ellington, who scored five of his 19 points during the stretch.

SC State never got closer than nine as the Carolina defense forced turnover after turnover, including nine first-half steals, as the Heels worked up a 61-34 halftime lead. The Heels took 25 free throws in the first half alone.

Tyler Hansbrough, who got 16 points in the half, poured in 26 total points in only 20 minutes to lead the Tar Heels. But the key points were scored by Ellington who seems so much more comfortable and confident. He hit all four of his free throws, had three steals, popped in three of seven three pointers, hauled in four rebounds, had a couple of assists and even blocked a shot.

Deon Thompson and Alex Stepheson totally outmanned the Bulldogs - Carolina fans can hope that dominance continues as the season progresses. Stepheson had a game-high nine rebounds and a career-high 11 points. Thompson contributed eight points.

One thing to watch - and one of the only negatives - is Ty Lawson's foul trouble. He picked up four fouls in only 26 minutes of action. Remember his foul trouble in the first game of the season got the Heels in a pickle.

The Tar Heels passed the century mark with a Danny Green follow of a missed shot. Usually, in a game like this, the biggest cheer of the game goes up when the team reaches 100. In this game, however, the loudest the Smith Center got was when seldom-used reserve J.B. Tanner of Hendersonville, formerly of the JV team, sailed in a deep three with less than three minutes to go to put the Heels up 109-57. The second loudest moment may have been a free throw by end-of-the-bencher Patrick Moody, who pushed in a free throw for the final point after missing three previous attempts.

That's not a knock on Moody - I would have loved to have been an end-of-the-bencher for Carolina when I was in school. I never could get up the nerve but I wanted to ask Coach Smith if he'd let me pull a George Plimpton and play a few minutes during the Blue-White game so I could write about it.


Check out the box score. See the game photo gallery.
Read my Tar Heels' season preview on WRAL.com by clicking here.

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