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Things to talk about besides our wretched basketball season

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From elsewhere in the world of all things Tar Heel...

UNC's women's basketball team is mired in a miserable slump as well.  The Tar Heel women have dropped five in a row and have fallen out of the top 25 for the first time since 2001 after being ranked in the top 10 earlier this season.  Misery loves company, huh?

There was a huge seven-player NBA trade that sent former UNC big man and longtime Washington Wizards stalwart Brendan Haywood to the Dallas Mavericks.  Now rumors are flying about whether or not the Wizards will move former Carolina star Antawn Jamison before Thursday's trade deadline.

In other UNC-related NBA news, C. Michael shared the disappointing news about a reoccurence of cancer for Nuggets coach George Karl.  After overcoming a bout with prostate cancer in 2005, Karl has now developed a "very treatable and curable" form of throat and neck cancer.  Karl's son Coby also had cancer while playing at Boise State but beat the disease and achieved his dream of playing in the NBA.  All the best wishes to George Karl and his family.

A Buster Sports blogger is reporting, fourth-hand from elsewhere in the tweetosphere and blogosphere, that the UNC football team may sport alternate helmets for the season opening game this fall against LSU in Atlanta.  No one inside Carolina athletics has confirmed this, and Buster Sports has developed a reputation of being, shall we say, less than accurate sometimes.  Then again, Nike (the wonderful people who brought Carolina this hideous thing) has developed a "Pro Combat" line of football apparel, some of which tweak traditional looks for its football schools (as evidenced by the ill-fated Florida "modern-retro" Pro Combat helmets the Gators sported for their two losses this season), so something like this is not out of the question.

Personally, I think the Carolina football helmet is great - my favorite logo (the interlocking NC) on the blue helmet is classic, although many fans would love to see the helmet reversed (Carolina blue NC on white, although I don't care for white helmets).  The helmet in the picture looks like a design class final project more than a real possibility for an alternate helmet, as people come up with concept designs of uniforms and headgear all the time.

UNC's baseball team takes to the field on Friday against George Washington to open the drive for five consecutive trips to the College World Series.  The Diamond Heels begin the season ranked #20 in the Baseball America preseason poll and #13 in the Collegiate Baseball poll, one of six ACC teams appearing in the top 25.