Saturday, February 24, 2018
Colleges

North Carolina HB2: Sometimes it's good that sports holds sway over us

The NBA went first. So when they go to hold a basketball all-star game in Charlotte, N.C. next year, it'll be a pick-up deal. All those closed minds can just choose up sides.

Now the NCAA and ACC are on the move, warp speed, away from the state of North Carolina and its warped, mouth-breathing idea of lawmaking: House Bill 2, or HB2, an anti-discrimination law that _ wait for it _ discriminates against members of the LGBT community.

You know, it would almost be worth driving to North Carolina just to throw up inside the border.

The NCAA is pulling seven championships from North Carolina, including men's basketball tournament games. The ACC is moving its football title game and other championships out of state. Sometimes sports can make a statement. Sometimes sports can be more than games.

Enough with the talk that this was politically correct.

It's just correct.

All these championships being pulled from the Tar Heel State is a win for freedom and tolerance.

Sometimes it takes sports bringing down the hammer.

Think about it: Would Martin Luther King Jr. Day be celebrated in the state of Arizona if the NFL hadn't pulled a Super Bowl for the 1993 season?

I have no idea if these decisions will lead to a decision to kill HB2, but wouldn't it be grand?

Here's just one nugget of enlightenment in HB2, formally known as The Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act: Access to a multi-occupancy single-sex restroom is based on sex as "stated on a person's birth certificate," rather than gender identity.

The one, the only: "Bathroom Law."

"We're going to plug on," North Carolina governor Pat McCrory, who signed HB2 into law, told media this week. "North Carolina is resilient. North Carolina is strong. North Carolina is inclusive. North Carolina is welcoming. And I am going to defend North Carolina."

You do that, Patrick Henry.

Meanwhile, we'll enjoy your ball games.

Sometimes I worry that sport has too much power over us.

This is one of those times I'm glad it does.

Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski has called HB2 "embarrassing."

Imagine if the Duke-North Carolina basketball games were canceled because the participants refused to play out of protest. I love the idea.

The NFL should be in on this. The Carolina Panthers should be in on this.

One state's ignorance is another's opportunity. There will be a feeding frenzy as other cities and states poach North Carolina events. Tampa Bay will definitely be in the hunt.

Don't be surprised if the next ACC baseball tournament ends up at Steinbrenner Field. Don't be surprised if Tampa Bay takes a swing at again hosting the ACC men's basketball tournament.

There are early-round NCAA men's tourney games scheduled for Greensboro in 2017 and Charlotte in 2018. Orlando has early-round games in 2017, so Tampa is probably out of that mix. But 2018 is in play.

Of course, that's missing the point.

This isn't about where games are going.

This is about where HB2 needs to go _ into the trash.

Better yet, flush it.

It's a shame we have to call on sports to run it up on the governor and legislators until North Carolina sees that this law has no business in this or any other nation.

The NBA got it right. The NCAA got it right. The ACC got it right.

They're taking their balls and going home. Anywhere but North Carolina.

Comments
Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville must vacate its 2013 men’s basketball title following an NCAA appeals panel’s decision to uphold sanctions against the men’s program in the sex scandal case. The Cardinals will have to vacate 123 victories including the c...
Published: 02/20/18
Center Molly Franson’s value to UT is easily quantifiable

Center Molly Franson’s value to UT is easily quantifiable

TAMPA — Coaches often point to "intangibles" — the subtle positive qualities that usually don’t show up in the boxscore — when praising their key players.But University of Tampa women’s basketball coach Tom Jessee has a different definition when desc...
Published: 02/13/18
FSU holds off rally in hard-fought win over Louisville

FSU holds off rally in hard-fought win over Louisville

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Terance Mann couldn’t mope over two missed free throws that could have sealed Florida State’s victory. There was still work to do on the other end to make sure Louisville didn’t take advantage. The junior guard quickly redeemed hims...
Updated one month ago
No. 23 Florida clobbered at home by Alabama

No. 23 Florida clobbered at home by Alabama

GAINESVILLE — Mike White hung his head.Florida’s coach scuffed his shoes against the hardwood, screamed into his hands and watched as his team let Saturday’s game slip away.With Alabama on a seven-point run 11 minutes into the second half, the Gators...
Updated one month ago

USF Bulls fall to Memphis

TAMPA — From its two-point home loss against UCF to its victory at Tulane, USF recently had provided its fan base encouragement in spurts. Similarly, its interior defense against Memphis on Wednesday night also came and went.With 6-foot-3 Tigers guar...
Updated one month ago
Florida’s shooting goes cold in road loss to Georgia

Florida’s shooting goes cold in road loss to Georgia

ATHENS, Ga. — The repeated misses were bad for No. 23 Florida. The failure to rebound them made the offensive struggles even more painful. Yante Maten scored 20 and Georgia recovered after blowing a halftime lead to beat the Gators 72-60 on Tuesday n...
Updated one month ago

Florida State beats Miami in OT despite 17 Hurricanes 3-pointers

TALLAHASSEE — Florida State’s Leonard Hamilton and Miami’s Jim Larranaga both have at least 33 years of college basketball coaching experience under their belts.Both might have experienced a first during their matchup Saturday.FSU and Miami needed a ...
Updated one month ago
Chris Chiozza scores 20 as No. 20 Florida routs Baylor

Chris Chiozza scores 20 as No. 20 Florida routs Baylor

GAINESVILLE — Florida point guard Chris Chiozza was feeling it, so he went with the flow.A pass-first point guard by nature, Chiozza decided to stay aggressive as a scorer and see what happened.The Gators were glad he did.Chiozza finished the 20th-ra...
Updated one month ago
Pro Bowl to honor UCF for undefeated season

Pro Bowl to honor UCF for undefeated season

ORLANDO — The NFL plans to recognize UCF’s 13-0 season during today’s Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium.Players have been invited to walk out on the field for a celebration after the first quarter."When we thought about UCF and the amazing season the...
Updated one month ago
Michigan State athletic director retires in wake of scathing ESPN report

Michigan State athletic director retires in wake of scathing ESPN report

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis announced his retirement Friday, the day an explosive ESPN story detailing a number of allegations of sexual assault and violent attacks on women occurred with Spartan athletes.Hollis...
Updated one month ago