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Semi-Liveblogging Clemson

Why not? Let's see if my TV can handle that much orange.

7:45 UNC's first possession doesn't give me much confidence in UNC's half court offense. Clemson's pressing though, so there will be a lot of transition game, though. 4-2 Clemson.

7:47 Clemson's taking bad shots, UNC's missing easy ones, and both teams are now out and out running, make or miss. 8-6 UNC.

7:50 UNC hasn't run a half court offense since the first possession. They're still missing too many lay-ups and giving up too much on the defensive end. 13-10 Clemson at the first timeout.

7:52 First broadcast of Tiger Rag. As opposing fight songs go, it's pretty tolerable.

7:53 The play-by-play banter on the other hand, is absolutely awful. Ginyard hit both free throws, but Oglesby does the same. 15-12 Clemson.

7:55 UNC gets Clemson in a set offense and draws the shot clock violation. They can flummox the Tiger guards. 15-14 Clemson.

7:57 Hansbrough's been quiet on offense, hanging more on the perimeter and not being a presence on the boards. 15-14 Clemson.

7:58 Of course, as I say this he scores. Thomas is now in, and Graves has a block. 16-15 UNC.

8:00 The press is a lot harder to beat with Thomas running the point than Lawson, and the Heels turn it over with poor passing. Still 16-15.

8:03 Ginyard misses another layup and Clemson is getting way too many offensive boards. Luckily the Tigers are missing free throws. 16-16.

8:05 Thomas turns it over (palming) and leaves the game. Not a good welcome back. 19-16 Clemson.

8:07 Of course, Lawson immediately commits a charge. 22-18 Clemson.

8:08 Three steals in a play - there's a lot of chaos on the court right now. Ellington's free throws tie it up at 22.

8:10 Two consecutive fast breaks for UNC nets one point thanks to a foul and a jump ball from the Clemson defense. The Tigers are putting up bad shots though, and UNC leads 27-22.

8:11 Thomas re-enters the game as Clemson hits one of two free throws. 27-23.

8:13 Purnell calls timeout and isn't happy. 29-23 as the Heels pickup on defense.

8:14 Clemson isn't getting anywhere on offense - they really don't know what to do when Booker is getting outmuscled - but their defense is superb, getting three straight stops. 29-25 UNC.

8:16 Make that 29 all. Two straight steals from the Tigers off of Thomas. A really poor start back for Quentin.

8:20 The announcers praise a horrible Oglesby three that doesn't fall. They're smarter when they were waxing rhapsodic about Trevor Booker - I don't know when he got this good, but he's giving Hansbrough fits, even if it's taking a lot out of him. The game's tied at 31.

8:23 I'm watching this on "Comcast SportsNet" - which just rebrands the FSN broadcast. It makes for a bit of a schizophrenic experience, with two different networks advertising during the break. 33-31 UNC.

8:26 Terrence Oglesby is the John McCain of this gain. A fourth-place effort being raved about by the guys on the microphone. He's made 1 of 4 shots, people. 38-35 UNC.

8:27 Clemson is hitting the offensive glass with, well, everyone, and UNC is letting them. Thomas is back running the point, and missing free throws. Although Deon Thompson committed a lane violation anyay. 39-38 Clemson.

8:29 And that's the half, 41-38 Clemson. Oliver Purnel wants to psh it inside in the second half, which is sensible, as their outside shooting is not good, and they have the strength to wear down a Stephenson-less Heels. I hope Lawson's resting a lot in the first half to be able to go the distance in the second, because Thomas is flailing at the point at the moment. Graves is also throwing up a lot of shots that aren't falling. UNC needs a better performance on offense in the second half.

8:35 Comcast SportsNet - and I really hate this cable company by the way - is spending halftime covering... the redskins cleaning out their lockers after the season. I can't decide if this is better or worse than FSN's promise of revisiting the 1996 ACC Tournament upset of UNC by Clemson.

8:46 Thank God we're back. Comcast really shouldn't be in the TV business.

8:47 Ginyard makes a great pass in trouble to Ellington. Both teams are running, faster than the broadcast can keep up. 43-42 Clemson.

8:48 Lawson drives to give UNC the lead, but Rivers does the same. 45-44 Clemson.

8:49 Clemson's doing a lot more driving inside, and it's working. 52-49 Clemson.

8:51 Timeout at 54-49 Clemson. UNC is just being outhustled in a lot of regards. Not their best performance.

8:54 Bad, quick shot from Hammonds leads to an easy Lawson two. 54-51 Clemson.

8:55 Followed by a bad three from Oglesby. Anything you'd like to say, talking heads?

8:56 Hansbrough's blocked while Booker scores, but Ellington keeps UNC in the game with a three. 58-54 Clemson.

8:58 A second inbounds leads an easy two for Green. For all the frustration the Heels are feeling, they're taking smart shots and not losing their heads. 58-56 Clemson.

9:00 Thomas makes a good penetration, gets in trouble and draws a foul from Booker. A very smart play. 60-56 Clemson.

9:01 Someone needs to let KFC know that a "sauceless hot wing" really isn't the phenomenal innovation they seem to think it is. What is with Yum brands (Pizza Hut, KFC and Taco Bell) that spurs them to invent new ridiculous food instead of just, you know, making actaul good food?

9:04 Great Thompson to Ginyard pass. Still playing very composed, even as Clemson is firing on all cylinders. 64-60 Clemson.

9:07 If Clemson loses this game, the blame can fall squarely on their poor free throw shooting. 65-60 Clemson.

9:08 Ellington, however, hits all three at the line. 65-63.

9:09 I don't know how much of the rebounding lapse for the Heels is just misjudging the ball coming off the rim. It's really strange.

9:10 Stitt scores and draws the foul, but can't convert. 67-65 Clemson.

9:11 Everytime UNC draws close, Clemson hits another shot. This time it's RRivers. 70-67 Clemson.

9:15 Lawson makes both free throws to cut the lead to one. I still think the charity stripe is going to make the difference. 70-69 Clemson.

9:16 Lawson "may" have been bumped? He was dragging Mays down the court! 72-69 Clemson.

9:17 Folks, Oglesby's just taking bad shots. He's not stretching the defense, he's not putting pressure on the perimeter, he's giving UNC the ball.

9:18 Bad, bad, lob to a triple-teamed Hansbrough. First really poor decision from the Heels in awhile.

9:20 Without Wright to draw some of the heat like last year, Clemson can just send everyone at Hansbrough when he gets the ball. Mays blocked him that time, andn it's 74-69 Clemson.

9:22 And then Lawson stops thinking, giving up a drive to the basket and then turning it over out of control on the other end. 76-70 Clemson with under four to play.

9:26 Hansbrough drives (!) and draws Booker's fourth foul. 77-72 Clemson after his free throws.

9:28 Another Booker offensive rebound. These are killing UNC. With 2:45 left, it's 79-74 Clemson.

9:31 Ellington is keeping UNC in the game but the breaks are all going the Tigers' way. 81-77 Clemson.

9:34 Clemson misses another free throw while Green hits a three, and it's 81-80 Clemson with 1:37 remaining. A good defensive stop here and it's UNC's game.

9:35 They get it, with a Hansbrough rebound. Tyler draws the foul on the other end as well - two smart plays from a guy who has dealt with a lot tonight. A minute left.

9:37 Hansbrough misses one of two. 81 all.

9:37 But then he draws the charge. Very nice. 48 seconds left and a tie game.

9:39 UNC has no set ready for Clemson's zone. Williams calls timeout with 24 seconds left, 12 on the shot clock.

9:41 Ellington takes a rushed three that doesn't fall. Clemson has 13 seconds to win it.

9:42 Booker can't get the shot over Hansbrough to fall, and Mays rushes the putback. Overtime. I'm never going to see The Wire, am I?

9:46 Hansbrough's free throw shooting has been... Clemsonesque and he misses two to start OT.

9:47 Stitt makes one from the line, 82-81 Clemson.

9:48 Ellington makes two after a Ginyard steal though, giving UNC the first lead since the first half. Ellington's approaching 30. 83-82 UNC.

9:50 Clemson regains the lead with an entry pass to Mays. The Tigers are dominating the boards on defense, but are sloppy with the ball. 84-83 Clemson with 2:07 to play.

9:54 Thompson turns it over, falling down. He's been pretty quiet in the post. Clemson ups the lead to 86-33.

9:55 Ellington gets 32 and 33 at the free throw line. 86-55.

9:56 Hansbrough gets the stop and rebound, and Lawson's now on the line for UNC. Hits both, 87-86 UNC, 45 seconds.

9:57 Hammonds misses, but Clemson gets the rebound in a scrum. Green fouls out sending Clemson to the line with 14 seconds left.

9:58 Clemson makes both, shockingly enough. 88-87 Tigers.

10:00 Ginyard almost loses it from Lawson, there's no real offense and Williams calls time with 5.4 left. Ellington's the only one playing real well at the moment, but the Tigers have to be looking for him.

10:03 The inbounds is to Lawson, who drives and finds Ellington for the three. It was almost a steal, but instead... damn. That's a shot that wouldn't have fallen last year. 90-88.

Clemson fans are in shock. The Tigers are still a threat, even with 0.4 left though.

10:05 The pass never makes it inbounds. UNC has it under their own basket. That's the ball game.

For a game that gave me fits for so much of it, the Heels really showed their mettle - not throwing up bad shots, never panicking. Stephenson was greatly missed and Thompson needed to be more of a presence (and Thomas and Graves just need to be better) but Hansbrough bounced back from a defense focused on him, Ellington had a phenomenal night (36!) and Lawson ran things to perfection when required at the end.

The 0-for Chapel streak is going to be a bitch to keep going come February, though. Clemson won't be under 0.500 in the league this year.