No matter how the season is going, every ACC team relishes the opportunity to get a win over North Carolina in Chapel Hill. But, to borrow a line from the SEC, sometimes it just means more.
For Pittsburgh assistant and North Carolina alum Jason Capel, Wednesday night was one of those times.
For Capel, who played for the Tar Heels from 1998 to ’02 and is now an assistant for his older brother, Jeff, Wednesday’s 65–64 victory over his alma mater clearly carried a little extra weight. The 43-year-old got into a shouting match with fans as he left the court immediately following the win, then offered an exuberant celebration just outside of the team’s locker room.
“Y’all gonna disrespect me? All I did for this program? Y’all gonna boo me?” Capel yelled to the crowd, per WUNC’s Mitchell Northman. “I held this s--- together when Matt Doherty tore it apart. F--- that s---.”
Capel was referring to former North Carolina coach Matt Doherty, who coached the program from 2000 to ’03. The Tar Heels went 8-20 in the ’01-02 season—Capel’s last with the program—with Doherty being dismissed after the ’02-03 campaign.
After the game, Jeff offered some context about Jason’s relationship with the school, and alluded to a social media post from North Carolina that he believed was “trolling” his younger brother.
“Since he’s left here, there’s been a lot of disrespect towards him,” Capel said. “One thing happened today—and I don’t think it’s coming from within the basketball program, and I don’t know who controls their social media—but there was a tweet … I thought it was them trolling him. And it’s a complicated relationship with him and North Carolina—he loves it, but I think at times he doesn’t feel that back.”