Welcome back to Heel Week, everybody! Yeehaw!
What a great day to be a Duke fan. Shortly after our Blue Devils punked the petulant Bumble Bees of Georgia Tech, Roy, um, led his Tar Heels to another loss, this time on the road in Blacksburg against Seth Greenberg’s Virginia Tech Hokies. I have never liked Greenberg so much.
While Greenberg celebrates a somewhat anticlimactic win, Roy had this to say: “I thought it was two teams that tried awfully hard.” Another gem from sophomore point guard Larry Drew:
Q: Does it get tiring hearing about opposing guards scoring 20 points on UNC?
Drew: “Yeah. Yeah, it gets old. But it’s up to us to stop that from happening.”
In light of Carolina’s string of defeats—that’s six of the last eight—here at Crazie-Talk we decided to take it easy on the men in sissy blue and focus on some of UNC’s former, more successful players. It was easy to hate these five players. Mostly because they were good (ok, there’s one exception.) All of them, despite their talent, ground on my conscience and made me want to throttle the television screen. They cry, whine, pound their chests, bleed, get ridiculous tattoos, take awkward jump shots…am I giving up too much?
Presenting the top five most hated Tar Heels of the past 10 years. (If you missed it, you can check out numbers six through ten here).
5. Marcus Ginyard (Guard, 2005-forever)
I know I said I wouldn’t pick on current UNC players in this top 5. But as Ginyard is essentially a dinosaur, aka fifth year senior, he has provided enough vitriol in his overlong stay at Chapel Hill for me to squeeze him into the top five.
No, no, Marcus. The 'crouching tiger' defensive posture only works when you're facing the offensive player.
The irony here is that I once respected Marcus Ginyard. He took a job in Chapel Hill delivering pizzas at one point, something I did not expect out of any college basketball player, let alone a Tar Heel. (I wonder how much he made in tips from them Carolina faithful?). Ginyard always seemed to fade into the background among his more talented teammates, particularly when in 08-09, when an injury forced him into a medical redshirt.
This past summer, however, Ginyard decided to take a more proactive role as a Tar Hole. With Hansbrough and Co. gone to the league, Marcus found himself the elder statesman of the Dean Dome, and thought he’d school the rookies in Karolina Klass.
Before basketball even started, Ginyard was positioning himself as a Cameron Crazie favorite. In an interview with WRAL, he revealed his true feelings on his rival down Tobacco Road.
“A lot of their players walk the line between a good, tough player and like a little shady, dirty…I have a strong dislike for most of the players who play at Duke.”
What you want, cookie?
Ginyard was not done, though. After Duke’s loss to Wisconsin in the ACC-Big 10 challenge, he tweeted this message: “Big 10 can have this challenge. Duke loses, we all win…” Big words from a man named “Number 1 cheerleader” during his UNC’s 2009 title run.
Side-note: while looking through Ginyard’s twitter, @MG1NYARD, I found this gem:
Way to look out for your own, Marcus.
4. Danny Green (Guard, 2005-2009)
Maryland won that game.
Danny, did you learn your style from another former UNC moron?
There’s also the infamous incident at Cameron in 2008, when the Crazies donned baby blue ribbons in memory of UNC student body president Eve Carson, who had tragically passed away days earlier. After defeating Duke in Cameron, Green went out of his way to pop his jersey towards the crowd. Way to represent your school, Danny. Have fun bench warming for the Cavs, maybe LeBron will put him in one of his pre-game routines. That’s about all the attention you’re going to get.
3. Brendan Haywood (Center 1997-2001)
Where'd you get your...friends...Brendan? Brendan? You asleep big fella?
Brendan Haywood came to UNC in 1997. Like Kris Lang, he was a local yokel (Greensboro, NC) and earned a spot as a Burger Boy on the McDonald’s All-American team. At UNC, he averaged a respectable 10 points per game over his four year career. He blocked a lot of shots and set a few Tar Heel records. (Does that mean he gets his jersey in the rafters? No, can’t tell, too many worthless things up there).
It’s not Haywood’s game that drives me nuts. It’s his attitude. The guy complained about every call in college, flailing his arms around and screaming after the officials. Like Danny Green, he was a dancer. He would jump up and down after he got called for a foul, tapping his toes like Fred Astaire. I distinctly remember Brendan being named “College Hoops Biggest Crybaby” after his senior season. That same issue had Shane Battier on the cover. Haywood should have learned from Shane how to take it like a man.
What makes Haywood’s antics all the funnier is his recent call-out of LeBron James during the 2008 playoffs. Haywood plays for the Wizards, one of the worst franchises in sports, who had somehow managed to make it to the post-season. The Wizards employed “Hack-a-Lebron,” fouling James extremely hard to try to get him out of his rhythm. When James fought back in the media, Haywood had this to say:
I love Jay Mariotti’s response in that video: “Who is Brendan Haywood to talk about Lebron James like that?”
Like his number (and probably his UNC GPA), Haywood is a zero in the NBA. He has averaged a whopping 6 points over his career, and only gets burn because the Wizards literally have no better big men.
The irony of Haywood, the world’s biggest whiner in Tar Heel blue, calling out a superstar is stifling. Take a seat, Brendan. Or go back to Carolina, I’m sure an assistant coaching spot will open up for you soon.
2. Tyler Hansbrough (Forward, 2005-2009)
Wait, my socks are still on?
Hansbrough is a college basketball legend. He was a great player at North Carolina. OK. I said it.
Tyler Hansbrough will go down as the most polarizing player in ACC basketball history. (JJ Redick may be #2) He was devastatingly effective at playing basketball in the ugliest possible fashion.
"Photo grapher! Get me some more mousse!"
Unlike many of the previous players on this list, Hansbrough did not piss me off out due to his off the court antics. It was his incredible feats of awkward basketball that drove me out of my wits. I cannot deny his intensity, or his desire to win a championship. He was the face of college hoops for at least two years, and he set a good example by staying for four years.
But really, can you fault me for hating the guy? He created a new era in ACC officiating, drawing hundreds of undeserved fouls and traveling to his heart’s content. His stumbling monotone voice during interviews made me cringe. And when things didn’t go his way, he got all teary.
Since graduating from Carolina, Hansbrough has gotten some attention from the ad world. What was AT&T thinking? At least they didn’t let him talk, unlike the geniuses at Performance Acura. TEST WOW!!!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m extremely grateful Hansbrough finally moved on the NBA. Just don’t make me watch him flounder his way to the free throw line for the Pacers.
Oh, and he celebrates like a Jesus Lizard.
1. Rashad McCants (Guard, 2002-2005)
And the winner is…RASHAD!!!
McCants, before he got stole on by Lamar Odom.
Let me explain why Hansbrough is not number one. Hansbrough deserves my respect. Even if he plays the game like an angry kangaroo, he gets the job done.
On the other hand, I have absolutely no respect for Rashad McCants. He was an absolute punk during his three-year stay at UNC. I’ll admit my personal animus against Rashad here—he hails from Asheville just like I do. It’s sad that he represents my town.
The main thing that separates McCants from the rest of this list is simple: everyone hated him. He even gave his own fans a reason to resent him, comparing Chapel Hill to a prison: “You’re not allowed to say certain things, but once you get out of jail, you’re free. (I’m) in my sentence, and I’m doing my time.”
Why celebrate McCants? Why hang his jersey among the rafters with illustrious stars like Jordan and Worthy? I don’t understand it.
Since his “prison stay” at UNC, Rashad McCants played a few years with the Minnesota Timberwolves, and was recently traded to the Sacramento Kings, black hole of bad contracts. Apparently they didn’t want him, so they traded him to the Rockets. New beginnings? Not quite. The Rockets have dropped him, and now McCants has fallen off the face of the earth, along with his legendary website.
Rashad’s most notable achievement since leaving Chapel Hill Penitentiary was briefly dating MTV-star Khloe Kardashian. It didn’t pan out, though—she is now married to Lakers star Lamar Odom. I guess Kardashian wanted a guy with a steady job.
I’ll leave you with a sample of Rashad McCants’ bizarre poetry. It puts JJ’s to shame:
“Love Thief” by Rashad McCants
I’m not a Grinch that stole love but I’m a thief with no love.
Eyes bright like city lights when she enters my life.
Every morning after yawning we make love to sweet nothing and birds chirping.
My tongue lurking for that spot that says stop and makes ya mouth drop.
I’d spit you out just to taste you again.
And again I’d have this dream during the day where my eyes lay wide shut.
Love has culture shocked my brain and blindsided my heart,
my skin crawls with butterfly touches that tickle my smile.
Her eyes drown me in her deep blue sea. I openly swim naked in her fresh water.
So natural she smells like rain….
* * *
Wait, I forgot someone.
Honorable Mention: Harrison Barnes (Forward – 2010 – ?)
This guy could one day end up at the top of this list. But he hasn’t stepped foot on campus as a student, so we’ll write him in as an honorable mention. In one of the most public recruiting battles between Duke and UNC in recent memory, Barnes led the Duke coaching staff to believe that he was theirs (for a long, long time), only to commit to Roy Williams via Skype on Friday, November 13th. Many of the student efforts designed to lure Barnes to Duke were organized by the Crazies who run this very site. Duke fans, coaches, and players were all, in essence, betrayed by Barnes & Ignoble, Backstabbers Inc. And it is for that reason that Harrison Bryce Jordan Barnes will be considered (by us, anyway) as one of the most hated Tar Heels ever.
As UNC throws their season away before our very eyes, we hope Harrison is wondering if he has made a huge mistake.