Sunday afternoon's North Carolina-Notre Dame game, an 83-76 Tar Heels win, felt like a tournament game. These two teams have played in the last NCAA and ACC tournaments, so when the game got moved to Greensboro, N.C. the building buzzed a little out of habit.
A water shortage in Chapel Hill moved the game to Greensboro Coliseum, a building that gets loud when North Carolina is in town for the ACC or NCAA Tournament, and especially hyped for this unexpected Super Bowl Sunday affair.
Roy Williams carried that energy into the postgame press conference, taking a moment to note that North Carolina won't be enjoying that home cooking in March because of the state legislation.
"Glad we got to play here because of that stupid rule ... shouldn't say rule, law."
Greensboro was set to host first- and second-round games of the NCAA Tournament this March, but lost the games when the NCAA pulled seven championships out of the state citing the associations' values "of inclusion and gender equity." This decision came after North Carolina's legislature enacted HB2, a bill that the NCAA, and critics, believe is anti-LGBT.
Roy Williams and Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski have both been among the law's critics, with Saturday's comments calling the law "ridiculous" and "stupid." He even joked that since the emergency water shortage was no longer a pressing issue, restaurants were open and customers could use whatever bathroom they want.
The law, which Krzyzewski has called "embarrassing," has also led to non-sports cancellations, including Bruce Springsteen and Pearl Jam concerts. Currently New York and Minnesota are among the states that have mandates against "non-essential" travel to North Carolina. Albany and Vermont have both canceled non-conference sporting events in the state as well.