- Robbi Pickeral, College Basketball
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Updated: 9:20 p.m.
GREENSBORO, N.C. -- The NCAA selection committee seems to like pitting North Carolina coach Roy Williams against his former team.
The Tar Heels, the No. 8 seed in the South, could face the No. 1-seeded Kansas Jayhawks in the round of 32. But they first have to get past ninth-seeded Villanova on Friday in Kansas City.
“I am extremely happy for our team that it earned a selection to play in the NCAA Tournament,'' Williams said in a prepared statement. "Our players did exactly what I thought they would do– they worked hard and got better and better as the year progressed. Making the field is a reward for their continued improvement. We look forward to hopefully playing our best basketball this coming weekend."
Williams has already faced the Jayhawks in the postseason twice since he took over as UNC’s head coach in 2003 -- in 2008, when the Tar Heels lost to the Jayhawks 84-66 in the Final Four and last March, when UNC lost to KU 80-67 in the regional finals.
Another potentially intriguing matchup for the Tar Heels in the South region: sixth-seeded UCLA, which features former UNC players Larry Drew II, David Wear and Travis Wear. That match-up wouldn’t happen until the region final.
UNC is 6-2 all-time as the No. 8 seed in NCAA tournament play.
Around the ACC: Miami, which beat UNC in the ACC tournament title game earlier Sunday, earned the No. 2 seed in the East. Duke is the No. 2 seed in the Midwest and NC State is a No. 8 seed in the East.
“I am somewhat surprised and disappointed that only four ACC teams are in the field and that the league only received two #2’s and two #8 seeds,'' Williams said in a statement. "I think the ACC deserved better than that.”
59dJeff Goodman and Jeff Borzello