Wednesday, June 20, 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
Florida State will host Florida Gators to open this basketball season

Florida State will host Florida Gators to open this basketball season

For the first time in almost two decades, Florida and Florida State will open the men's basketball season against each other.The Seminoles will host UF on Nov. 6, both programs announced Wednesday morning. FSU has won four in a row in the series."Any...
Published: 06/20/18
With starting QB Josh Jackson’s status resolved, FSU will open against full-strength Hokies

With starting QB Josh Jackson’s status resolved, FSU will open against full-strength Hokies

Florida State's primetime opener against Virginia Tech looks a little tougher now than it did a few days ago.Hokies starting quarterback Josh Jackson has had his academic eligibility resolved and remains on the team, the Roanoke Times reported Tuesda...
Published: 06/19/18
As USF-Yuengling bond grows, is SEC’s alcohol stance slowly shifting?

As USF-Yuengling bond grows, is SEC’s alcohol stance slowly shifting?

USF's expanded partnership with Yuengling — including naming rights to the Sun Dome — is only the latest part in an evolving relationship between college sports and alcohol, as my colleague, Joey Knight, wrote on the front page ...
Published: 06/18/18
Florida’s Brady Singer voted top college baseball player of year

Florida’s Brady Singer voted top college baseball player of year

OMAHA, Neb. — Florida pitcher Brady Singer has won the Dick Howser Trophy as college baseball's player of the year.Singer, who received the award Friday, carries a 12-1 record and 2.30 ERA into the College World Series, which begins Saturday. T...
Published: 06/15/18
Former Plant QB Rex Culpepper cancer-free; ready to return to Syracuse lineup

Former Plant QB Rex Culpepper cancer-free; ready to return to Syracuse lineup

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Rex Culpepper is back. The smile on his face said it all. The redshirt sophomore quarterback had his first full workout with Syracuse on Friday after overcoming testicular cancer. He said he broke down and cried when he was told he w...
Published: 06/15/18
Willie Taggart comes clean on the origin of ‘Do Something’

Willie Taggart comes clean on the origin of ‘Do Something’

During his question-and-answer session with more than 500 Manatee-Sarasota boosters Monday evening, FSU's Willie Taggart was peppered with the normal inquiries about recruiting, offensive scheme and the Seminoles' quarterback derby.All well and good....
Published: 06/12/18
When Willie Taggart filled in for Tommie Frazier at Manatee High

When Willie Taggart filled in for Tommie Frazier at Manatee High

It would have been easy — expected, even — for Willie Taggart to be nervous when he started in place of the injured Tommie Frazier as Manatee High's starting quarterback in 1991.Nope. Taggart wasn't, even though he was the first...
Published: 06/12/18
FSU football coach Willie Taggart gets local hero’s welcome

FSU football coach Willie Taggart gets local hero’s welcome

SARASOTA — He slithered and scrambled his way into the local consciousness in the fall of 1991.Manatee High's Willie Taggart, 145 pounds in a sopping jersey, suddenly found himself with the keys to the Hurricanes' ruthlessly efficient opti...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18
Florida Gators add West Virginia grad transfer Adam Shuler

Florida Gators add West Virginia grad transfer Adam Shuler

Former West Virginia defensive lineman Adam Shuler announced Monday that he plans to join the Gators as a graduate transfer.Shuler, a 6-foot-4, 268-pound Longwood native, started 10 games for the Mountaineers last season. As a redshirt sophomore, he ...
Published: 06/11/18
Florida State’s Jessica Warren lives ‘every senior’s dream’ with Women’s College World Series title

Florida State’s Jessica Warren lives ‘every senior’s dream’ with Women’s College World Series title

OKLAHOMA CITY — Jessie Warren’s career finished just the way she envisioned it. On Monday night, Florida State’s star third baseman made perhaps the play of her career, a diving catch and throw for a double play that helped preserve a 1-0 win over Wa...
Published: 06/06/18