North Carolina coach Roy Williams’ frustration with a 10-16 season boiled over after he saw his team lose another game on a last-second shot.
The Tar Heels blew a 15-point second-half lead in a 77-76 loss to Notre Dame on Monday, losing for the third time in four games on a last-second shot. They’ve lost six in a row and fell to last place in the 15-team ACC.
“You got two choices: You can compete your butt off, or you can get in the fetal position and curl up and start crying,” Williams began in his postgame news conference. “I’m not going to freaking do that.”
Williams then let out a swear word and apologized to reporters.
“We’re going to (expletive) … excuse me, I apologize to everybody,” Williams said. “We’re going to freaking compete. That’s what we’re going to do. We play Saturday. You feel sorry for yourself, and you’re going to do that the rest of your freaking life. I apologize. I don’t know what I’m doing right now the way I’m cursing.”
Notre Dame’s Nate Laszewski made a three-pointer with 1.8 seconds to lift the Irish (16-10) to the home victory. UNC is 1-6 in games decided by three points or fewer in 2019-20. The Heels lost 64-62 to Virginia on a last-second shot Feb. 15 and before that lost to archrival Duke 98-96 on a last-second shot in overtime.
“You’ve got to be all-in, or you’ve got to leave,” Williams said. “Come on. It’s not the easiest thing in the world, but you’ve still got to compete. It’s frustrating, it makes you angry, and every little mistake you wonder why.”
Preseason All-American guard Cole Anthony went down with an injury and missed most of December and all of January. The freshman returned Feb. 1 but hasn’t been able to add a spark. The Tar Heels can only reach the NCAA tournament by winning the ACC’s automatic bid in the conference tourney.
The Tar Heels are 3-12 in ACC play, and for the first time since 2001-02, they’ll enter the ACC tournament with a losing record. UNC faces Louisville on Saturday.
“The bottom line is we’re going to play a game on Saturday and see what happens,” Williams said.