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UNC ripe for another upset?

Ninth-ranked North Carolina was upset Monday by the College of Charleston. Could the Tar Heels be primed for another upset Sunday, when Virginia Tech visits Chapel Hill?

As a result of injuries, North Carolina (11-4) has been without swingmen Marcus Ginyard and Will Graves. Before the Tar Heels' loss on Monday, Coach Roy Williams did not give his hurting team a resounding endorsement as ACC play approaches.

"We've really been a lot more unsettled than I want to be," Williams said in a teleconference. "And I think in order to get a lot of questions answered and come to some good answers with your team, you need to have situations where things are normal and you can have more consistent play. Then it's easier to make decisions when you've got everybody playing and you can evaluate how they're playing and the whole bit. But we've changed our lineup quite a bit."

While North Carolina has capable big men in Ed Davis, Deon Thompson and others, it has lacked depth in its back court.

Ginyard, a four-year starter, has missed each of the last three games after spraining his right ankle last week. Graves, the Tar Heels' top three-point shooter, missed his first game Monday after rolling his ankle in North Carolina's win over Albany on Wednesday.

"If we were playing Virginia Tech tonight, neither one of them could play," Williams said on Monday. "Now I'm hopeful that by Sunday, perhaps one of them -- and I couldn't even guess which one it would be -- but I think there's a chance that by Sunday one of them could play. But I really don't know."

There is some good news for the Tar Heels. Williams, who had a the torn labrum in his left shoulder surgically repaired in November, wore a sling on the sideline for the last time on Monday night.

"I’ll be the happiest person around," Williams said of removing the sling.

But that was before North Carolina lost to Charleston on Monday. Now, as they prepare to host the surging Hokies (12-1) on Sunday, the Tar Heels are reeling and on guard for another upset.

By Mark Viera  |  January 5, 2010; 10:15 AM ET
 
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