‘Signgate’ stupidity and the good old double standard!

Been traveling a lot. (No…not the Tyler Hopswalk kind of traveling) Busy with work. Only so many hours in the day to keep the blog updated.

I was at the game last night. Saw the “disgraceful” (sarcasm) sign that the baseball player held up at halftime. Didn’t think twice about it. All I could make of it was that it was a picture of Hansbrough’s bloodied nose from last season with some comment about him finally wearing the right color.

Hell, I actually appreciated an athlete from NC State caring enough about the game to show up on Wednesday night. (I don’t expect the Technician to run any stories about the situation since they obviously must be folding their presses in light of their budget crunch which evidently means that they can’t afford to print newspapers.)

I was listening to 610 WFNZ’s Primetime with the Packman on Thursday afternoon and was pretty surprised at how big of a deal this ridiculously insignificant item has been made into. Packman does a pretty fantastic job of nailing a lot of things related to the NC State Basketball program and does a super job of keeping people off of irrelevant topics (like Herb Sendek, etc). So, I was disappointed in their interest in this pile of nothing.

I just don’t understand how holding a picture of an event that actually happened – and was witnessed by millions on national television nonetheless – is that big of a deal? For over a year the local and national media have re-played and re-run the awesomeness that is Tyler Hansbrough (just wait until he farts!) by treating his incident with Gerald Henderson as a badge of honor. Now the topic is suddenly taboo?

(While we are on the topic of broken noses, media and fan hypocrisy, and total irrelevancy, we can’t pass up the opportunity to link to this classic entry that you cannot miss and is particularly special in light of the components of this ‘controversy’.)

The only thing that would make the treatment of Hansbrough’s nose (and feelings) more ridiculously slanted would be if Hansbrough had some kind of control over the initial incident and could have actually prevented it from happening. Now, that would be wild and even more interesting that you never hear about that from the media?!

You know…like if Carolina was up big on Duke during that game and didn’t need the points and Hansbrough was trying to run up the score on Duke and rub salt in their wounds when he had his nose broken? You know…like if the specific situation was that Carolina was up by 12 points with 14 seconds remaining in the game and Hansbrough – who shouldn’t have been on the court in the first place – rebounded a Bobby Frasor missed free throw and instead of kicking the ball out to let the clock expire he wanted to play tough and physically position himself for more points with a posterizing dunk in the face of the Blue Devils?! You know…something like that!

A set of facts like that which the world is never made aware of despite the litany of attention around Hansbrough’s nose-breaking would really be a damning nail in the coffin of media hypocrisy, wouldn’t it? Or, what if Tyler Hansbrough had been given a technical foul in a game last year in Raleigh for losing his temper and taking a wild swing at the head of an NC State player in the middle of a play where NC State got a rebound? Wouldn’t that be something of interest that may have some relevance to people’s feelings for the great “Psycho T”?

Additionally, could you imagine if a State student or athlete had shouted some kind of gross, racially charged slur instead of holding up a picture with a harmless caption? Wow!? We may have gotten just as much local coverage as when a lily white UNC-CH student shouted stereotyped racial remarks on national television at Maryland players because the Terps had the audacity to actually beat the Tar holes. (Link to the national media who covered the story since the local media wouldn’t dare say highlight the ‘open-mindedness’ of the liberal zoo that is Chapel Hill).

Remember a couple of years ago a random person in the RBC crowd ALLEGEDLY made a crude remark about a member of Chris Paul’s family who had recently died? That undocumented remark became the cornerstone of a highly critical column in the News & Observer by everyone’s favorite, Barry Saunders. Yet Saunders, who makes his living finding racism in everything from the sun rising to the color of stale Corn Flakes, didn’t write a peep about the folks in Chapel Hill’s racially-charged comments earlier this year against Maryland. Odd.

In the midst of all of the pettiness and hypocrisy, we’d like to tip our hat to the good people at 850 The Buzz who had enough common sense to post the following comments in today’s blog entry on the topic.

Of course, let me also point out that the holier-than-though attitude is tiresome from all parties involved. If North Carolina fans want to get upset because a member of the baseball team had some fun at the expense of Hansbrough, then I have a request for the next “Late Night with Roy” these fans attend. Don’t laugh it up with your boys when people representing the athletic department dress up like a backwoods redneck with a straw hat during a “Dating Game” skit.

For those of you keeping score at home the following are some summarized rules as we have learned them from recent events:

(1) Pictures of actual, real-world events are off limits and are criticized by local media.

(2) Alleged, undocumented crass comments by an unseen fan in an arena warrants extreme criticism in the state’s major newspapers.

(3) Documented, racially charged criticisms on national television by fans of one school against the players of another do not carry the same criticism as point #2.

(4) Documented, racially charged criticisms on national television by fans of one school against the players of another does not merit the level of criticism that showing a picture of something that actually happened warrants.

(5) Multiple athletes and representatives of the Athletics Department of one school can participate in mocking skits that perpetuate hurtful, racist and socio-economic stereotypes in a capacity-filled arena without any mention or criticism of the behavior by the media and local sports radio. The skits last as long as 5 to 10 minutes and draw raucous laughter from the ‘open-minded’ and enlightened elite that watch them.

(6) A single athlete from a different school cannot show a picture of an actual, real-world event for 15 seconds in a capacity-filled arena without being ridiculed and criticized by the same media that ignore the behaviors in point #5.

(7) Fans and student bodies in arenas and football stadiums in the area are allowed to participate in derogatory organized cheers and chants that degrade the value of the degree of another institution (‘If you can’t go to college, go to State!’) and that school’s curriculum (‘start your tractors’, moooooo, ‘cow college’, etc) with no mention of ‘crossing the line’ while showing a professionally taken photograph of a real-life event represents ‘classlessness’.

You got all of that? If you are new to North Carolina…welcome to our version of the ‘main stream media’.

Post-script: For reference, here is the link to our take of of the Hansbrough vs Henderson situation when it happened.

With 14 seconds to go in today’s Duke/Carolina game – and with the game firmly in the hands of the Tarheels who had a 12 point lead – Duke’s Gerald Henderson connected with a forearm across the bridge of Tyler Hansbrough’s nose on a put-back attempt after a rebound of missed Carolina free throw…

Hansbrough rebounded a Bobby Frasor missed free throw with 14 seconds left and instead of kicking the ball out to let the clock expire he was playing tough and trying to physically position himself for more points – preferably on a dunk in the face of the Blue Devils. What was Duke supposed to do? Just allow Tyler Hansbrough to go up for a posterizing dunk on a play that never needed to happen in the first place (why was Hansbrough on the court up 12 with 14 seconds to go)?

It was unfortunate. But, it was also uncontrollable at that speed and in that situation.

No. Wait. I take that back. It was completely controllable. All Hansbrough had to do was kick the ball out to a guard to hold for 14 seconds instead of trying to get some nasty slam designed to rub salt in Duke’s wounds. Or, all Roy Williams had to do was to not have his starters in the game up 12 with 14 seconds. That would have controlled the situation.

But…of course…Hansbrough has the unalienable right to play hard and the Duke players aren’t given that same right? Why is that Tyler Hansbrough has the innate right to be intense and playing extremely hard at the end of the game but nobody else is allowed to do the same thing?

Ironically, it is the very Tyler Hansbrough who is involved in this situation that literally took a swipe/swing at the head of Brandon Costner in the Tarheels visit to Raleigh earlier in the year. Hansbrough barely missed conncecting with Costner, but did that somehow diminish the “combative and confrontational action” of taking a blatant swing at an opposing player in behavior that IN NO WAY was related to the play of the ball?

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59 Responses to ‘Signgate’ stupidity and the good old double standard!

  1. choppack1 02/22/2008 at 10:02 AM #

    What Hansboro gets away w/ shows you how the ACC really works. Compare his treatment to Darius Songalia – ’nuff said really.

  2. RedDog74 02/22/2008 at 10:03 AM #

    I’m pretty much with you on the double standard, SFN, but I don’t know if the fact that a “professionally taken, real-life event” picture was held up means it’s okay. I’m sure we can all think of plenty of real photographs of actual events that we wouldn’t want to see displayed at the RBC center. Do I think the sign is a horrible offense? Not really. Would I hold it up? Nope.
    As to the officiating on TH, I couldn’t agree more. Never has so much (fouling) been missed for so long (2+ seasons) by so many (officials).

  3. Rochester 02/22/2008 at 10:04 AM #

    According to the Sun-Sentinel, Lowe was there to watch Brandon Knight, a sophomore guard who scored 38 points. Must have been impressive.

  4. Ismael 02/22/2008 at 10:04 AM #

    Admins, if this is not the place, for this i understand.

    Nice writeup on Mike Glennon but the best part…10min Youtube video of the UnderArmour Game mostly of his highlights and the gushing commentary by the ESPN analysts. It’s also nice to get to hear Terry Gannon (consummate professional) plus he puts in a plug for NC State. This game alone was huge for NC State because of how often they mentioned TOB and NCSU and how the program would return to prominence.


  5. Sweet jumper 02/22/2008 at 10:07 AM #

    I wish one of our guys would have contested the several uncontested dunks late in the game when we went into matador mode. I completely understand that Henderson did not want any UNX player to dunk in their face at the buzzer when they were already beaten. Sometimes blood is drawn when bodies collide and sometimes it is not. That was 2 guys playing hard. There was nothing intentional about the play and it could have been avoided if Tyler had dribbled the clock out like he did against us Wednesday night.

  6. For85 02/22/2008 at 10:08 AM #

    somehow I missed the sign. Sounds funny and appropriate to me.
    we’ve been the subject of far more grievous crap over the years, even from espn and game announcers. The technician used to be an ok rag back in the early 80’s. The daily tar hell was always a highlight, especially the dean smith head on the muscled-up basketball player.

    I was surprised that my kid at chapel hill mentioned to me how inconsistent the calls were in the game. I told her that handsbro would’ve had 3 fouls in the first 10 minutes if here was wearing the red and white. I almost got her to goto state but the scholarships worked out the other way.

  7. GoldenChain 02/22/2008 at 10:14 AM #

    Despite all the banging pushing and knock downs Blood had two fouls, both late.

  8. boonami 02/22/2008 at 10:23 AM #

    Blood’s the ACC Poster Child right because of his National POY possibility. I really hope they give it to the dude from K-State, but with all the blowing of Blood by the local and national press, it’s almost a foregone conclusion. I don’t know if I can stomach watching any game with UNX to hear the announcers suck off Hans. Reminds me when Battier was at Duke…hope the hell he goes pro next year.

  9. Tar Heel Fan 02/22/2008 at 10:32 AM #

    (4) Documented, racially charged criticisms on national television by fans of one school against the players of another does not merit the level of criticism that showing a picture of something that actually happened warrants.

    Actually I think the sign has garner next to nothing in the way of coverage. If you Google “UNC fans ghetto” you get article after article either mentioning it or condemning it(including my blog). Searches looking for the sign issue turn up very little. ACC Now does not mention it and they mentioned the crying fans and the ghetto comment. Ken Tysiac mentioned it in his writeup of the game and he also apparently cannot tell the difference between Fells and Hickson crediting the latter with that vicious alley-oop dunk in the first half. 850 only mentioned because a commenter quoted Adam Lucas and also because Joe Ovies knows his readers and how to drive traffic on his blog.

    Personally, I don’t think it is something an team representing the school should do with the target of the sign is sitting on the opposing team’s bench. I think Midnight Madness is different and while they might poke fun at NC State with the “redneck” generalizations(something I tend to avoid because I know plenty of NCSU guys and they are all smarter than I am) I do not think you would see them making light of a player injury. And if the UNC baseball team came out with a sign depicting Chris Paul hitting Julius Hodge in the crotch then I would be the first to condemn it as I imagine this blog would too with all the rage being shown now.

  10. Rochester 02/22/2008 at 10:41 AM #

    The difference between Chris Paul’s nut punch and Henderson’s sweet shot was that Henderson’s came in the action of the game, and could have been unintentional. There’s no possible interpretation of Paul’s nut punch that is unintentional. Plus Jules wasn’t asking for it by pouring on meaningless points in an out-of-hand game with less than a minute to play.

  11. nycfan 02/22/2008 at 10:48 AM #

    I think you’re making a bigger deal out of it than Packman did on his show, to be honest. I don’t think it warranted much coverage, but I also think shows like Packman’s make their ratings from stirring up a hornets nest of idiot callers.

    If I were to give Packman some credit for merely stating his mind with no agenda other than his own reaction to reading about the sign on-line, I think there is a certain sensitivy for some sports fans about celebrating injuring an athlete in the context of a planned university event (I suspect no comment (outside of usual internet chatter) would have been raised had some students in the crowd had the same sign).

    The institutional aspect (part of a half-time program that sounds more thought-out by the participants, at least, than honoring the ’83 national title team was by whoever was responsible for that) is what drew (fairly limited) attention to the matter.

    FTR, I think the alleged UNC student who made the remark in the Maryland game should lose her ticket priveleges if she can be identified. Hopefully, the youtube attention at least has the culprit ashamed (but I tend to doubt that of some one who would say that in the first place). But the institution is no more responsible for her terrible behavior than is any other school for the reprehensible bile some so-called “fans” unload.

    Any pissing match about how “classy” fans are it always ludicrous to my mind b/c so many fans apparently rely on games to vent all their life of frustrations — it boils down to a “yo momma” contest among 7-year-olds, IMO.

  12. Ed89 02/22/2008 at 11:17 AM #

    From the Sun-Sentinel article mentioned above:

    Tonight, at my alma mater, I watched the most exciting basketball game that I’ve attended in months.

    Pine Crest vs. American Heritage, in a regional semifinal.

    Kenny Boynton Jr. vs. Brandon Knight.

    Among those in the overflow crowd in PC’s tiny gym: Sidney Lowe, Bobby Hurley, Rex Walters, Johnny Dawkins. They aired a feed of the game on the wall outside, for those who couldn’t get tickets. And there were plenty. I almost had to pull out the alumni card.

    Incredible shotmaking, from start to finish.

    Pine Crest pulled away even before Boynton picked up his fourth foul. (The game’s only disappointment was that Boynton’s foul trouble kept him from guarding Knight for very long. Pine Crest did a masterful job of trapping Boynton, and preventing him from launching his usual 25-foot threes).

    Boynton, who scored 29, is a junior, and he looks like he’s headed for Duke.

    Knight, who scored 38, is just a sophomore. He will be highly coveted.

    And if you haven’t seen him yet, and you’re a hoop junkie, you should.

    He plays like a 25-year-old pro. He has the floater, the hesitation dribble, and he’s always moving toward the basket. Unbelievable.

    2010 will be a big — and crucial class for us.

  13. Ed89 02/22/2008 at 11:33 AM #

    Speaking of classless fans, has anyone noticed during the last two State home games I’ve watched – Clemson and UNC, when the announcers are talking at halftime, in front of the student section, their is a State student flipping the bird to the camera (behind the announcers). What a loser….THIS student could (AND SHOULD) be identified by the university and SHOULD lose his ticket privileges. Not sure if it was the same student both times, but it was not a “quick” bird, rather a head scratching bird lasting for 5-10 seconds. It completely looked “grade” schoolish. It really does not paint State fans and/or the University in a good picture.

    IMO, the immature kid should be found and lose his ticket privileges.

  14. Girlfriend in a Coma 02/22/2008 at 11:35 AM #

    What a bunch of nothing.

    From my seats (in the lower bowl) I could not decipher what the sign was trying to communicate. I saw the “right color” thing but the picture was not visible. My kids and I spent the whole time looking and trying to see what it was.

    Now that I know what it was, I find it mildly amusing and have no problem with it. If a UNC baseball player had a sign with Paul nutshotting Hodge I can assure you I would not be offended. That actually would be funnier to me because of the nutshot comedy aspect.

  15. EverettBeez 02/22/2008 at 11:52 AM #

    Thanks for the info on Lowe’s trip. I am still not sure it was the right place to be, though this young man sounds like a hell of a player.

    I still come back to that quote from Coach Rat about college ball being more physical then the pros. I think of it as Big East style taking over the nation – and Rat brought it the ACC. This is NOT how college ball should be played. The only way to stop it is a concerted effort by the refs. I hold out no hope.

    College helps forms young men’s lives and characters. Hop-a-long’s nose shouldn’t of been broken, because no team should play that thuggish – and also because TH belonged on the bench because Roy was teaching the whole team about sportsmanship & class.

    But you know fellas, class & sportsmanship just doesn’t do as well in the ratings. Rude in is and cool. Just ask that state fan giving the finger that was mentioned above.

  16. RAWFS 02/22/2008 at 12:18 PM #

    THF – I think that this whole issue has failed to gain much traction because it is sort of a nothing thing, kid taunting kid tastelessly, the horror!

    The ghetto remark probably did because it had the racial component and people are all over-sensitized about anything that appears to be racially insensitive.

    Neither speaks for their school, nor its alumni or fans.

    Regarding an NCSU athlete carrying the sign, its my understanding that two non-athlete students handed it to him and that he took it with him where it then got its fifteen minutes of fame. Should he have done it? I don’t think so, but I am over twice the kid’s age and see things differently. There are far more witty ways to poke at UNC IMHO.

  17. robopack 02/22/2008 at 12:24 PM #

    HOW oh WHY can it be accepted time and time again that Hans owns a license to steal in the acc? Even on opposing courts! He levels Javi with a forearm to fend off ball pressure, blatantly flattens JJ on a drive to the basket, hits Gavin on the arm shooting a three. These are just easy calls IN THE 1st HALF! Think of how foul trouble can change the outcome of a game. Should have limited his minuets and aggressiveness at least in the second half. If he had red and white on all we would here from the announcers is how Hans-blow needs to learn how to channel his aggressiveness and play with-in himself, more under control. That being said UNX will get there medicine in the NCAA toury when some other conference officials get there whistles on his ass!

  18. boonami 02/22/2008 at 12:27 PM #

    i hope so robopack and I agree, if he played for State, he’s foul out in the 1st half most games for playing that Shaq style ball.

  19. WolftownVA81 02/22/2008 at 12:42 PM #

    You missed my favorite poster of the UNC game. The one where totally insensitive State Fans made fun of RIVAL fans by showing a poster with a picture of said RIVAL fans crying after a recent loss. Totally uncalled for – all State Students should be made to attend sensitivity training (sarcasm.) Must be a slow sports news day when this kind of crap gets reported on. Can’t they write about old coach K’s boys getting beat back to back or something.

  20. Mike 02/22/2008 at 1:20 PM #

    One other aspect no one has mentioned. Mr Potato Head had his nose broken with his team up 14 and mentioning he should have been out fo the game.

    Go back to Weds, with under a minute left, Potato Head is diving on the floor for a loose ball, and of course Patrick is raving about him. “Look at Potato Head, diving on the floor for a loose ball. This guy does it all……..”

    If I were Roy Williams, why is my star on the floor in this game at this point, especially diving for loose balls??? Funny thing was, he got pounded on that play, hit his face on the floor, and had a big red mark around his eye. Hustle is great, but why is he even out there at that point? Never should have been on the court at that time in the game, much less the floor. Seems to me he gets what he deserves.

  21. SMD 02/22/2008 at 1:44 PM #

    I’ve got a little random tidbit about the b-ball program worth sharing.

    I just had lunch with a person who has had the privilege of attending a few of State’s practices this year. He said that his biggest “beef” with what he saw of Sidney is that in giving instructions for a given game situation, Sidney tends to just tell the players instead of physically showing and instructing them.

    I found that interesting. It makes sense, given Sid’s NBA background. In the pros, that’s all you have to do, tell them. This is probably a concrete example of how Sidney is still learning the college game on the job. (Though you’d think that Harris, Strickland and Towe would help out with that.)

    But who knows? This was just one observation from a few practices. It’s worth noting, but you really can’t read too much into it.

  22. choppack1 02/22/2008 at 1:55 PM #

    SMD – I’ve heard some random tidbits and they haven’t even been that encouraging.

    One thing about Hansbro – I would never, ever criticize our coach or our players for playing hard the entire game. I don’t have a problem w/ him doing that. I don’t have a problem w/ a very physical foul/no layup rule either. Play the game to win – play it hard and play hard all the time.

    With a 14 point lead late in the game, I don’t necessarily have a problem w/ a coach keeping the pressure up and having his better players on the court. Personally, I like the idea of demanding 40 good minutes.

  23. boonami 02/22/2008 at 2:18 PM #

    choppack, I can agree with you to an extent.. sure, everyone wants our teams to play hard and that’s my biggest beef with ours.. we roll over and die if things get tough, but keeping your star in with a big lead late, it makes more sense to sit him that risk a major injury. You can keep playing hard but put your scrubs in.

  24. vtpackfan 02/22/2008 at 3:53 PM #

    Wonder if said baseball players is a pitcher or position player? If he’s the latter then he should expect to see some “chin-music” the first time he comes up against and Tar Hole pitcher. Man I hope we take ’em behind the shed this season in baseball. It sucks seeing them make two straight trips to Ohmaha while we try and sort out why we wouldn’t build a real stadium for the last guy we had coaching. SOS.

  25. newt 02/22/2008 at 4:26 PM #

    It’s about time somebody made a decent sign.

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