Thursday, February 2, 2023

Top-ranked UNC men’s basketball team stunned 8 minutes after football team loses to rival NC State

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North Carolina has had better Black Fridays.

The Tar Heel men’s basketball and football teams both sustained upset losses — the basketball more shocking than football, but the football possibly more humiliating — in the span of about eight minutes on Friday night.

The No. 18-ranked football team fell 30-27 at home in double overtime to NC State, while the No. 1-ranked basketball team fell 70-65 to Iowa State in the Phil Knight Invitational, leading to nearly back-to-back sad final score tweets from UNC:

At least their graphics team is still doing its job.

The football loss to NC State was a thriller. UNC entered the game still smarting from a loss to Georgia Tech last week, but was facing a Wolfpack team down to its fourth-string quarterback. The College Football Playoff was no longer realistically attainable, but ending the regular season with a win over a rival would have been nice.

Would have. Instead, NC State jumped out to an early 14-3 lead and went up 24-17 on their final drive after intercepting Drake Maye. UNC responded with a fourth-and-goal touchdown to force overtime, but all that led to was an even more stressful loss, with a missed field goal in double OT.

Meanwhile, the men’s basketball team had a nice start, up 30-21 late in the first half, before the game tightened up near halftime. A 10-1 Cyclones run in the final minutes ultimately doomed the top-ranked Tar Heels, whose backcourt of R.J. Davis and Caleb Love combined to go 9-of-28 from the field with four assists and five turnovers.

Armando Bacot, the preseason ACC Player of the Year, had only six field goal attempts but still posted 13 points and nine rebounds. He ended the game on a horrific note, though, turning over the ball three times in a row during that Iowa State run.

The loss was the Tar Heels’ first of the season, though they hadn’t exactly played like a No. 1 team before Friday. Just one day earlier, they struggled to put away Portland, and had also failed to beat Gardner-Webb and UNC Wilmington by double digits.

UNC fell apart in crunch time against Iowa State on Friday, right as its football team was losing to NC State. (AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer)

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