North Carolina Newspapers

    • 8
ACC rule change may not be too hot
Sports Editor
The moot significant nile change for the
1978-79 Atlantic Coast Conference
basketball season is the elimination of the
Jump ball following the opening tipoff, in
conference games.
Not as much controversy as expected
has surrounded the change, but there still
remains plenty of room for a good
Thus far, no ACC contests have been
decided directly by the new rule and no
coaches or players have publicly refuted
As a matter of fact, it has been rather
well accepted by all involved in baskettiall,
from the most devoted fans to the con
ference officials who see it as a con
venience, now that they no longer have to
toss up the ball between the much taller
Despite the seemingly satisfaction and
the zero amount of controversy, the rule is
still destined to have some detrimental
far-ranging effects, and probably around
tournament time when play is usually
fierce and games count toward the con
ference and national titles.
It seems somewhat illogical to alternate
jump shot:) throughout a basketball game,
axvd especially in the ACC, where tossup
situations have had a knack for being
espe-ially crucial in the closing minutes of
Most jump ball situations are created as
the result of a tie-up between players
battling for the ball, or when offsetting
penalties have been assessed, and to
award the basketball by turns rather than
by a tossup would defeat the purpose.
Picture an ACC contest with a team
ahead 60-59, with five seconds remaining
in the game. The leading team has the ball
and the only chance that the team trailing
I on defense > has of gaining possession is to
force a tossup by tying up a player on
However, such a situation could have a
totally different perspective if the of
fensive team was due the ball according to
the new rule, and the efforts of the defeiu>e
would be in vain.
Some have defended the new rule b>
saying that the jump balls have evened out
anyway, but what they fail to realize '?
that regardless of how many times each
team gains possession of the ball, there a.v
guing to be key situations that should not
be determined by merely “whose turn it
In other words, no matter how hard >ou
work defensively and force a jump t"l]
.situation, unless it’s your turn for
possession, you've battled a lost cause.
An alternative would be to alternate
possession of jump balls in the first half
(like the current new rule) and return to
the tossup method in the second half,
where most crucial situations occur.
If the only reasons the ACC has in
stituted this new rule are to save time and
keep the officials from having to “strain
their backs" to get the ball up between two
v-ery tall players, then its hardly been
WOI^ It.
The only reason rules should be chan^?ed
are for strategic purposes or as .safety
precautions only.
That’s right, no one has complained as
yet, but that’s no reason at all to believe
that regret is not forthcoming.
ACC may be sorry for
Reflecting back on the Super
BowL..there’s no better way to play a
championship game than the way Dallas
and Pittsburgh played two weeks ago in
Miami, Fla.
Both teams were supposed to be the
epitanes of pro sports organization at its
best, having made their respective teams
contenders through the draft system and
not through the trading block as so many
teams try to do today.
Players such as Lynn Swann, John
Stallworth, Franco Harris, rookie Ron
Johnson and Mean Joe Greene of Pitt
sburgh and Tony Dorsett, Tony Hill, Drew
Pearson, Aaron Kyle and Thomas Hen
derson of Dallas were products of each
team’s superior scouting systems.
But, the Dallas “computer complex’
system for playing football didn’t quite
stand up to the Pittsburgh “blood and
guts’’ brand of playing, and therefore the
Cowboys succumbed by the score erf 35-31
in the highest-scoring Super Bowl game in
It only goes to prove once again... the
American Football Conference is still a lot
stronger than the National Conference,
and will continue to be so as long as there
is Pittsburgh, New England, Miami,
Denver, Houston, Oakland and the up and
coming Seattle Seahawks.
There’s no way that the NFC’s always
“terrible trio” of Dallas, Los Angeles and
Minnesota can stand up to the power ci
these teams.
The National Basketball Association
should adopt a name change if possible, to
the “post-ACC pro league,” because of the
outstanding former league that is now
gracing the pros.
Over at Washington, Mitch Kupchak
(North Carolina) is the most valuable
sixth-man in the league, providing forward
and center relief for the league-leading
Walter Davis (North Carolina) is only in
his second year and has turned the
Phoenix Suns from a team of inconsistency
to a perenniel contender.
Hard-working Bobby Jones and coadi
Billy Cunningham (both North Carolina)
are still trying to give Philadelpliia that
long-promised championship.
David Thompson (N.C. SL) is the
superstar money forward-guard who has
given Denver its title as a contender as
well as head coach Larry Brown (North
C^olina) who is still looking for a title for
the Mile High City.
Center Tommy LaGarde had gotten
Seattle off to a lightning-faststart until he
was injured.
John Lucas (Maryland) is running the
show over at Golden State, and is the
NBA’s assist leader.
However, the biggest ACC success story
this season may be in Kansas City, where
rookie sparkplug Phil Ford (North
Carolina) has turned the Kings around
from a perenniel doormat to a di\ision-
leading highly-contending NBA squad.
The Kings now have just as good a
chance as anybody to win a NBA title, with
their fold of some of the league’s best
James Alexander
Tom Burlesoir (N.C. St) is also doing a
respectable Job as the Kings’ backup
When the (layoff season gets underway
in late spring, look for Kansas City to be
right in the thick of the race, and if Ford
continues with his fantastic playmaking,
he could wind up as the league’s Rookie-of-
Wouldn’t it be nice to have two former
North Carolina teammates to win the
award two years in a row? Phoenix’s
Davis did it last year.
Plaudits go to unheralded tradi stars
Wayne Miller, E.J. Cleamons, Broderick
Bennett and Sam Brown, who according to
head coach Hubert West have been run
ning very well in the mile relay for the
The Heels ran against Duke and N.C.
State last weekend in the New Tin Can and
will go against NCCU, Appalachian St. and
Richmond this weekend.
The women ran against N.C. St. and
Virginia Tech last weekend and will
participate in the N.C. St Invitational on
Feb. 10.
Plaudits also go out to women’s team
members Karen Stevenson, Lauroi Lewis
and Annetee Woods.
New Yorker Black could
be UNC’s future gem
News Editor
When Phil Ford left the Carolina
basketball squad after last season, the
hearts of many people sank in grief
because they wondered where Coach Dean
Smith would ever get another guard.
Little did Tarheel fans know that Smith
would be successful in his quest to fill void
left by Ford, and come up with Jimmy
Black, and 18-year-old freshman from
the Bronx, New York attended Cardinal
Hayes High School. He won all“ity honors
last year, and led the voting in the All-
Catholic league in New York.
The six-foot-two New Yorker has played
organized basketball fince seventh grade.
In high school, he played on the freshmen
team and on the varsity team for three
Upon coming to Chapel Hill, Black
admits that he had no trouble adjusting to
life in Chapel Hill. He stated, “When I first
visited here, the people were very nice and
everyone got along so well that I just
decided that I’d hke to spend four years
Black, a psychology major admits that
he has no :x)mplaints or gripes about the
university. Although he enjoys life at
Carolina, he said he misses his mother’s
home cooking and his friends back home.
Black, who has played in most of
(Carolina’s basketball games, admits that
he has learned a lot from the other players
on the team. “Mostly,” he stated, “I have
learned about the intensity of the game
itself, the fact that we are playing and
practicing day in and day out.”
So far, one of his most memorable
games is the one against Duke. He stated,
“The Duke game was the first time that I
had been part of a very emotional game.”
When he’s not playing or practicing with
the basketball squad. Black enjoys
listening to music, disco dandng, and
playing bacgammon.
Black has no thoughts about playing
professional basketball at present. His
goal right now is “to get a job and be aUe
to live comfortably.”
Black’s quickness and speed in the
games against Duke and Arkansas, helped
to earn him the title of Rookie of the Week
in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
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