Tag Archives: north carolina

North Carolina Vacation – Day Six

I’ll skip ahead to the sixth day of my trip since I don’t have any pictures from day five, which was spent at the beach. It was a perfect place to take pictures, but I wanted to keep my iPhone away from the sand.

NC State’s bell tower.

For my last dinner we went to The Pit in downtown Raleigh.

I had Carolina style ribs with red beans & rice and fried okra. It was awesome, all of it. I also had a locally brewed double IPA. I’m pretty sure it was a regular IPA with a shot of moonshine dumped in.

And by the end of my trip, Max Power was as wiped out as I was.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, Photography, Travel

North Carolina Vacation – Day Four, Part Three (Barbeque)

Backyard BBQ Pit in Durham, NC. Rib Plate with collard greens, mac & cheese and hush puppies. As good as it looks. Oh, so, so, so good.

The Pig in Chapel Hill, NC. Chopped pork with cole slaw, hush puppies and homemade pickles. Awesome. Best chopped pork I had in NC. Orange cole slaw was really good, and the tangy homemade pickles were tasty as well.

1 Comment

Filed under Food, Photography, Travel

North Carolina Vacation – Day Four, Part Two (UNC Chapel Hill)

A light post outside of the Dean Smith Center at UNC Chapel Hill.

Inside of the Dean Dome. We were able to get into the stadium thanks to the Kenny Smith Basketball Camp. We actually caught a glimpse of Smith, who was wearing Carolina blue head-to-toe.

The rafters of the Dean Dome. I’m surprised they have any numbers left to give out with all those jerseys hanging from the roof.

The dome, which allows natural light in to brighten up the stadium.

Kenan Memorial Stadium. I was surprised at how much I liked this stadium. I hadn’t heard much about Kenan, but it has a gorgeous setting, with tall pine trees outlining the stadium.

Leave a comment

Filed under College Hoops, Photography, Sports, Travel

North Carolina Vacation – Day Four, Part One (Duke University)

Outside of Cameron Indoor Stadium on the campus of Duke University.

Hopefully they won’t have to re-name this “Blue Devil Ville” some day. Cough, Penn State, Cough.

First glimpse of Coach K Court. A big moment for a college basketball nerd like myself.

Inside of Cameron Indoor. It felt more like a church than a major college basketball arena.

Again, the very church-like interior of Cameron Indoor.

A not-pretentious at all light post outside of the stadium.

Wallace-Wade Stadium. Did you know that Duke had its own football team and stadium?

Duke Chapel.

Inside of the chapel.

Leave a comment

Filed under College Hoops, Photography, Sports, Travel

North Carolina Vacation – Day Two

My first experience with Carolina BBQ came at Clyde Cooper’s in downtown Raleigh.

The Verdict: Good stuff, not great. Wasn’t my favorite BBQ meal of the trip, but it was enjoyable. Chopped pork came with cole slaw, hush puppies and pork rinds. Sweet tea was great, and awfully sweet. The best part of Clyde Cooper’s is the atmosphere, the inside looks like it hasn’t changed in 40 or 50 years, and the service was incredibly friendly.

This was taken of a disc golf course. The courses in the area are nothing like the ones I’m familiar with. Tall pine trees everywhere. No grass, just rocks and tree roots line the ground. Streams and large ponds. Quite the experience.

Move over bigots at Chick-Fil-A, I’m part of #TeamBojangles. I had the cajun filet biscuit meal and it was great. If you haven’t already noticed a trend, I tried to eat myself to death on this trip. Lots of trans fats and sugar abound.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, Photography, Travel

North Carolina Vacation – Day One

Day one was a 17-hour roadtrip that took us through six states (IL, IN, OH, KY, TN and NC) from Villa Park, IL to Raleigh, NC. Highlights of the day were my first taste of Skyline Chili in southern Indiana (cinnamon in chili, really?), a sign for a Stinking Creek in Tennessee and views of roughly 50 Waffle Houses, 10 pro-Jesus billboards and one giant aluminum cross.

We didn’t go through Cincy, but we still found a Skyline in southern Indiana.

I had to get the 5-way. Verdict: Not too bad, but the cinnamon threw me off.

Crossing the Ohio River, going from Indiana to Kentucky.

In Tennessee. Sounds like a wonderful vacation spot.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, Photography, Travel

Buckeyes and Tar Heels Offer Reminders: Weekly Rankings and Championship Week Thoughts

New Flash: Harrison Barnes and the Tar Heels are still really good.


1. Kentucky (30-1)

2. Syracuse (30-1)

3. Kansas (26-5)

4. North Carolina (27-4)

5. Duke (26-5)

6. Ohio State (25-6)

7. Michigan State (24-7)

8. Missouri (27-4)

9. Marquette (25-6)

10. Wichita State (27-5)

11. Georgetown (22-7)

12. Michigan (23-8)

13. Baylor (25-6)

14. Wisconsin (23-8)

15. Indiana (24-7)

16. Temple (24-6)

17. UNLV (25-7)

18. Murray State (30-1)

19. Memphis (23-8)

20. Creighton (28-5)

21. Florida State (21-9)

22. New Mexico (24-6)

23. Gonzaga (25-5)

24. Florida (22-9)

25. St. Louis (24-6)

Frantz Massenat and Drexel might be left out the NCAA Tournament if they lose to VCU tonight.


– Since most of this week’s match-ups are still to be determined, I’ll fore go the games of the week section for some random thoughts:

– When Harrison Barnes, John Henson, Tyler Zeller, Kendall Marshall, Jared Sullinger and William Buford all decided to return to college for one more year, the expectations for North Carolina and Ohio State shot through the roof. Most people expected to see two of the best college basketball teams of the last 10 or 15 years. While they came into the season with immense hype, both squads seemed to slip under the radar after some high profile slip-ups (UNC got blown out by Florida State on the road and blew a double-digit lead to Duke at home; Ohio State lost at home to Michigan State and Wisconsin). But this past weekend, the Tar Heels and Buckeyes reminded us all why we all placed such high expectations on them in the Fall. North Carolina avenged their loss to Duke by blowing out the Blue Devils at Cameron Indoor, clinching the outright ACC regular season title. Ohio State got payback on the Spartans, coming back from a double-digit first half deficit to beat Michigan State and earn a share of the Big Ten regular season crown. It was a nice way of saying, “don’t forget about us, America.”

– I’ve seen a lot of college basketball writers say the loser of tonight’s CAA championship game between Drexel and VCU will still make the NCAA tournament. I’m really not sure about that. While I’d like to see both teams in the NCAA tournament, I’m not sure the loser of tonight’s game will have the resume to make it in as an at-large. No one seems to think Middle Tennessee or Iona will make the NCAAs after they got knocked out of their conference tournaments on Sunday and both those teams have incredibly similar resumes to Drexel and VCU.

Drexel: 27-5, 16-2; RPI: 67 SOS: 282 Vs RPI Top 50: 0-1 Vs RPI Top 100: 4-2

VCU: 27-6, 15-3; RPI: 63 SOS: 234 Vs RPI Top 50: 1-1 Vs RPI Top 100: 4-4

Middle Tennesee: 25-5, 14-2; RPI: 45 SOS: 207 Vs RPI Top 50: 0-1 Vs RPI Top 100: 3-3

Iona: 25-7, 15-3; RPI: 46 SOS: 157 vs RPI Top 50: 1-1 Vs RPI Top 100: 5-3

Personally, I’d much rather see all these successful mid-majors be rewarded with tournament berths over mediocre high-major teams like Seton Hall, Texas and Miami. But, the chances of that are slim-to-none.

-You can jump off the Wichita State bandwagon if you want, but I’m staying on for the long haul. I still like the Shockers to make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament, barring an awful placement in the bracket (i.e, an early round match-up with Kentucky or North Carolina).

– Power Conference Tournament Picks:

ACC: North Carolina

Big 12: Missouri

Big East: Marquette

Big Ten: Indiana

Pac-12: Washington

SEC: Kentucky

– These are the best two weeks of the sports year, enjoy ’em.

Leave a comment

Filed under College Hoops, Sports

In Appreciation of Mike Scott: Handing Out End of the Year Awards in the ACC

Tyler Zeller is one of three Tar Heels that made our All-ACC First Team.

I know we’re starting a little early, but over the next week, we’ll be announcing our season-ending college hoops awards. First up, the ACC:


F Mike Scott, Virginia: 16. 9 PPG, 8.1 PPG, 1.2 APG

Scott’s offensive rating of 117.2 ranks first in the ACC and fourth in the nation among players who used at least 28 percent of their team’s possessions. More on Scott later.

F Harrison Barnes, North Carolina: 17.7 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 1.1 APG

Barnes might not have put together an All-American type season, but he still played well enough to make the ACC’s first team. The native Iowan ranks second in the conference in points per game (17.7), and his offensive rating of 112.2 is third among ACC players who used at least 24 percent of their team’s possessions.

F Tyler Zeller, North Carolina: 16.2 PPG, 9.3 RPG, 1.5 BPG

Zeller has probably been the Tar Heels’ best player this season. His offensive rating of 120.7 ranks first in the ACC and eighth in the country among players who used at least 24 percent of their team’s possessions. He ranks 10th in the conference in defensive rebounding percentage (19.1) and 11th in offensive rebounding percentage (14.6).

G Kendall Marshall, North Carolina: 6.8 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 9.6 APG

Marshall’s twitter handle is @kbutter5, and his passes on the court are just as smooth. His assist rate of 43.4 ranks first in the ACC and sixth in the nation.

G Austin Rivers, Duke: 15.3 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 2.1 APG

It was a really though call between Rivers and Miami’s Durand Scott. I went with Rivers because his play has gotten better and better as the year’s gone on, and I believe he’s the biggest reason the Blue Devils are ranked No. 3 in the country. When the game’s on the line, Rivers is a stone cold killer.

Miami’s Durand Scott has been a stat-stuffer this season.


F John Henson, North Carolina: 14.0 PPG, 10.3 RPG, 3.1 BPG

F Mason Plumlee, Duke: 10.8 PPG, 9.4 RPG, 1.5 BPG

G Andre Young, Clemson: 13.3 PPG, 2.8 RPG, 3.3 APG

G Terrell Stoglin, Maryland: 21.0 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.9 APG

G Durand Scott, Miami: 13.1 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 3.2 APG

C.J. Harris had a solid season for a poor Demon Deacons team.


F Kenny Kadji, Miami: 13.0 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 1.8 BPG

F Ryan Kelly, Duke: 12.2 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 1.1 APG

G Seth Curry, Duke: 13.6 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 2.5 APG

G Michael Snaer, Florida State: 13.9 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 1.9 APG

G C.J. Harris, Wake Forest: 16.8 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 2.5 APG

Mike Scott might not be known across the country, but the Virginia forward was a beast this season.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Mike Scott, Virginia

Mike Scott might be the most under-appreciated player in the country. The junior forward is an efficient scorer, posting an effective field goal percentage of 58.3 (2nd in ACC) and a true shooting percentage of 62.9 (1st in the ACC). Scott was also one of the most dominant rebounders in the conference, grabbing 23.9 percent of the available boards on the defensive end (3rd in the ACC) and 10.1 percent on offense (13th in the ACC). Scott’s offensive rating of 117.2 ranks first in the ACC and fourth in the nation among players who used at least 28 percent of their team’s possessions.

Doc’s kid is a stone cold assassin when the game’s on the line.

FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: Austin Rivers, Duke

After taking some time to get used to the college game, Rivers has come on strong at the end of the year. His game-winner against North Carolina ranks as one of the most memorable moments of the regular season. The freshman’s improved play is one of the biggest reasons why the Blue Devils have moved up to No. 3 in the polls and are in line to receive a one-seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Henson has been a great defensive rebounder and shot-blocker this season.

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: John Henson, North Carolina

Henson ranks second in the ACC in defensive rebound percentage (24.7) and first in block percentage (10.1).

Coach K and Duke will play for the ACC regular season title on Saturday.

COACH OF THE YEAR: Mike Kryzewski, Duke

The Blue Devils lost the No. 1 overall draft pick (Kyrie Irving) and two four-year contributors who led Duke to the 2010 National Title (Nolan Smith and Kyle Singler), yet Duke is ranked No. 3 in the nation and is in line to receive a one-seed in the NCAA Tournament. Coach K has done a great job turning this year’s Blue Devils into a final four contender.

As always, all advanced stats came from Ken Pomeroy’s amazing website.

Leave a comment

Filed under College Hoops, Sports