No. 13 North Carolina stays busy with game vs. Tulane

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — North Carolina is staying busy, and the variety of opponents is going to help the No. 13 Tar Heels, coach Roy Williams said.

North Carolina meets visiting Tulane on Sunday afternoon at the Smith Center for its third game in five days. This comes after three games across four days last week.

“We haven’t had a chance to catch our breath,” Williams said. “It’s maybe a little more challenge than maybe I should have made it.”

North Carolina (7-1) has won twice since losing last Sunday to Michigan State in Portland, Ore.

Tulane (6-1) has matched last season’s victory total under second-year coach Mike Dunleavy Sr., a former NBA coach.

Williams said the nice thing about the recent North Carolina schedule is the types of teams the Tar Heels have faced.

“We want to play (against) completely different styles,” he said.

North Carolina has depth on its side, even with reserve point guard Seventh Woods expected to miss another game with a foot injury.

That made it convenient for the Tar Heels to have sophomore guard Brandon Robinson tally a career-high eight points (all in the first half) in Friday night’s 85-75 victory against Davidson in Charlotte.

“Even Coach (Steve Robinson, an assistant) told me it was my best game,” Robinson said. ” … The opportunity didn’t present itself in the second half.”

Robinson and forward Sterling Manley combined to account for all 15 of North Carolina’s points off the bench. Reserves also accounted for four of the team’s 14 assists.

It figures that Robinson and freshman Andrew Platek could end up with some more playing time as long as Woods isn’t in the rotation. Senior guard Theo Pinson’s foul trouble also contributed to their additional playing time in the Davidson game.

“I’ve always thought those guys coming off the bench have to give you something,” Williams said.

Tulane redshirt senior swingman Cameron Reynolds eclipsed the 1,000-point mark for his career in Wednesday night’s 81-65 victory against visiting Alcorn State.

Tulane made 14 baskets from 3-point range in that game. That’s the same number that Davidson hit against North Carolina on Friday night.

“We just want to put Tulane back on the map,” Reynolds said. “That’s the goal.”

Reynolds scored 21 points last season against North Carolina in a 95-75 loss in New Orleans, where the teams met in a season opener.

Next weekend, Tulane will face another Atlantic Coast Conference team with a matchup against Florida State at a neutral site in Tampa, Fla.

“Playing against top teams like North Carolina and Florida State will be great opportunities that complement the challenges throughout our schedule,” Dunleavy said.

Tulane’s only loss this season came in its lone previous true road game at Georgia State. The Green Wave began the season with five consecutive victories.

This will be one of five December home games for the Tar Heels, who have won 21 consecutive home games.

North Carolina has won 15 of 16 meetings against Tulane.