Causes Of UNC’s Downfall Might Finally Have Been Revealed In New Report

UNC basketball

Getty Image / Peyton Williams

Many believed the UNC Tar Heels were going to be one of the nation’s top basketball programs this season. Instead, they experienced a disastrous fall.

So much so, the number-one ranked team in the preseason failed to make an appearance in the NCAA Tournament. The first time since 1985.

Now, we may finally know what caused this downfall thanks to a new report.

According to The Athletic, there were several factors in play that seemed to be the root of the problem for UNC.

“Conversations revealed several issues, both psychological and basketball-related, that culminated in the Tar Heels’ downfall: shaky roster construction; chemistry issues; the natural growing pains of a second-year head coach; and an overwhelming inability to handle outside ‘noise,’ both praise and criticism.”

From the sounds of it, problems arose early in the preseason when UNC was ranked as the number-one seed early on. In fact, head coach Hubert Davis tried giving the team a pep talk in the hopes to shift their mentality.

“‘He impressed upon them a lot at the beginning that they had gone from the hunter to the hunted,’ one parent said, ‘and that they needed to know what that was.'”

Another parent points out that, due to the fact the players at UNC were garnering praise for the first time in their college careers, it may have gotten to their head, per The Athletic.

“They had this laissez-faire, la la la, we’re getting all this good publicity. It felt good to them because of all the negative that they had (dealt with) previously. So maybe they got caught up in that.”

UNC struggled much throughout the regular season. Nearly the entire roster failed to meet expectations and played under par with what was expected.

A lack of leadership and accountability may have been another culprit for the Tar Heels’ downfall. The team certainly didn’t play well, but the coaching didn’t help either, according to The Athletic.

“The blame is definitely not all on (Hubert Davis), but as the head coach, you get the credit when you win and the blame when you lose. It’s a combination of him, his staff, and the players, and the leadership — or lack thereof — that was seen for 30 games.”

Another person close to one of the UNC players claimed, “I would say there was probably like, 5 percent out of 100 of accountability, in and out of practice and games. There was barely any,” per The Athletic.

With that said, it sure sounds like problems were all over the place for the Tar Heels. The coaching, the strategy, the mental attitude, and the effort on the court.

Hopefully, UNC can find a way to turn things around for next season. If not, the Tar Heels may find themselves in a tough situation moving forward.