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Sudden and frightening news out of Chapel Hill this morning. WRAL is reporting that Tar Heel basketball coach Roy Williams is undergoing surgery to have a tumor removed from his right kidney.
No additional details are known at this time so we won't speculate what this means for Williams' long term health or the upcoming season. According to WRAL, more information would be available later on Wednesday.
In the meantime our thoughts and prayers go with Coach Williams and his family.
UPDATE(12:10 PM): Via WRAL's Erin Summers:
RW in surgery to remove a tumor from 1 kidney today. Will have surgery to remove another tumor from his other kidney in Oct. Prognosis good
The N&O's Andrew Carter has confirmed Williams is out of surgery but no word yet on whether the tumor is malignant or not.
It is expected at some point today, UNC will make an official announcement and provide further details on Williams' situation.
UPDATE:(1:00 PM) UNC has released a statement concerning Roy Williams' surgery.
University of North Carolina men’s basketball coach Roy Williams underwent a roboticpartial nephrectomy at UNC Hospitals this morning to remove a tumor from his right kidney.
Dr. Eric Wallen, professor of urology at UNC, and co-surgeon Dr. Mathew Raynor led the surgical team, which took three and a half hours to complete the operation. Doctors discovered the presence of the tumor during a physical earlier this month.
Dr. Wallen says Williams, 62, should be able to coach when the Tar Heels begin practice for the 2012-13 season on Saturday, October 13th. Williams may have a second surgery to remove a tumor from his left kidney at a later date and could be sidelined for a few practices.
“The surgery went well and according to plan,” said Dr. Wallen. “Coach Williams did great. I fully expect him to coach this season and for years to come. He could miss some practice time if we perform another procedure sometime in October, but he would be able to resume his coaching duties prior to the start of the regular season.”
You can read the full statement here which includes a quote from AD Bubba Cunningham.
UPDATE(3:30 PM): Per Andrew Carter, who spoke with assistant coaches Steve Robinson and C.B. McGrath, the team was informed at 10 PM Tuesday night and it "was an emotional scene." Since Williams is not expected to miss much time, no interim coach has been named. In the event Williams is forced to miss practices due to a second procedure, the "staff would collectively work together."