Skip to content

Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.

Roy Williams doesn’t see a future for the UK/UNC series after 2018


North Carolina coach Roy Williams appeared on Andy Katz’s podcast this week to discuss the upcoming season and various changes in the ACC, including the league’s decision to move from 18 conference games to 20 conference games in 2019. Williams said adding two conference games would likely put an end to the North Carolina/Kentucky series because the Tarheels’ schedule would be too difficult.

“I asked one of those guys [in the NCAA Tournament selection committee] one time, ‘Would you rather have North Carolina vs. Kentucky or would you rather have North Carolina and whoever was last in the league?’ They said, ‘We’d rather have North Carolina/Kentucky.’ I said, ‘Well, if you have more conference games, you lose some possibilities of having those kind of games.'”

Once the new rules go into place in 2019, Williams said he envisions the Tar Heels playing 20 conference games, the ACC/Big 10 Challenge, one exempt event with elite teams (ala the CBS Sports Classic), and home games to boost revenue. The Kentucky/North Carolina series was home-and-home until a few years back, when UNC asked to take a few years off and Kentucky replaced the series with a home-and-home with UCLA. Now, Kentucky, North Carolina, UCLA, and Ohio State participate in the CBS Sports Classic, in which the Cats will face the ‘Heels in Las Vegas in December. Once the new ACC rules go into effect in 2019, Roy said that outside of the CBS Sports Classic, there’s no room for a series with Kentucky.

“Oh yeah, there’s no — like I said, the way I’m looking at it now, why do I need to do that?” Williams said. “You need some games where your kids get a little confidence and they get a little feel for what college basketball is like instead of just throwing them into the fire and expecting them to make changes.”

On one hand, I see Roy’s point. The SEC currently has an 18-game conference schedule, and if that were to increase to 20 games, you have to think some of UK’s marquee non-conference games would face the chopping block; however, it would be a shame to see the series be limited to every three years, and that’s only if the CBS Sports Classic is renewed.

Click here to listen to Roy’s explanation, which comes around the 30-minute mark.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

7 Comments for Roy Williams doesn’t see a future for the UK/UNC series after 2018

  1. Mathlete
    4:00 pm August 24, 2016 Permalink

    This seems to be the way things are going in college hoops – one or two major non-conference games, a bunch of tune-up games, conference play, and the tournament. Talk about a snooze fest!

    I’d rather see us play the conference games in home/home round-robin style and have more non-conference games! Wouldn’t college hoops (and the networks that actually run it) benefit more from fewer Kentucky/Alabama basketball games and more Kentucky/Kansas games?

    • Angelo
      4:11 pm August 24, 2016 Permalink

      Agree! Conference games are weak.

    • rickwhitetx
      4:29 pm August 24, 2016 Permalink

      Hang on Mathlete … if the SEC went home/home round robin that would be 26 games. That would leave less room for non-conference games, not more. Now, if you’re talking about one game per conference foe per year, that would be 13 games. But, who, out of conference, is going to schedule Kentucky in the middle of their conference schedule?

  2. BobKYCats
    4:09 pm August 24, 2016 Permalink

    Another solution would be to let conference play begin earlier, as early as December, even November. We play conference games in week 1 in football, why not basketball? I know the main argument would be that the team is not ready, but last year we played Duke in the second or third game of the season.

  3. ukcamel
    4:42 pm August 24, 2016 Permalink

    Hmm, there is another ACC team we play every year, but they won’t follow suit because we are a huge revenue driver for them.

  4. serdi
    5:04 pm August 24, 2016 Permalink

    It is too bad that we have come to megaconferences and the all mighty dollar.

    Up until five years ago, I would have advocated that if UK was only going to play one power team in non-conference play every year that it would be North Carolina…but after what we have all learned about the fraud that is the the Carolina Way going all the way back to Dean E. Smith, I would not be sad for UK to stop playing them.

  5. RickE
    8:48 am August 25, 2016 Permalink

    I bet Louis. would love to drop the UK game too. It’s all about the money for them, though. Have to pay for Ho Ho’s.