You know things are bleak in Chapel Hill when Tar Heels fans are now awaiting the start of FOOTBALL season despite it being early January.
Following injuries to superstar point guard Cole Anthony and Anthony Harris, his expected replacement, Roy Williams and North Carolina have totally hit the skids. They have lost six of their last eight games, and are 1-3 in the ACC following back-to-back losses against Georgia Tech and former Duke assistant Jeff Capel's Pitt.
To make things worse, the Panthers hadn't won a conference game in approximately 1,000 years.
UNC can't count an NCAA Tournament bid as a sure thing at this point. Heck, they can't even bank on the NIT right now.
The injuries have clearly taken a toll, but the Heels aren't even looking competitive in defeat. They're getting boat-raced at home by the bottom-feeders, their shooting is down as compared to last year, and that trademark inside presence is tissue-soft. With no end to the losing in sight and Anthony likely gone after this year for the NBA anyway, this whole thing is likely to get a lot worse before it gets better.
Williams has guided UNC back from some horrible starts in the past, but this stretch of mediocrity feels different, as the Tar Heels don't even look particularly interested. This awful season could have broader repercussions in the years to come in terms of recruiting, so time is of the essence in finding a way to swing the momentum back in the right direction.