Louisville men's basketball coach Rick Pitino had to be restrained by his coaching staff after getting into a verbal argument with an unidentified UNC fan at the end of the first half of a game in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Feb. 22 (video below).
Pitino said at a post-game press conference that a fan "got in my face and said something I didn't like," notes ESPN.
According to ESPN reporter Maria Taylor, the fan shouted a familiar insult: "Pitino, you suck!"
"I take it from the students all the time; you expect it from students," Pitino elaborated. "But from an adult? And then to turns his back on me like he's a coward? And he is a coward ... but North Carolina is a classy place and one person doesn't speak for the rest of the people."
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The fan was ejected, but Pitino's No. 7 Cardinals went on to lose to the No. 8 Tar Heels, 74 to 63.
"I've always said this is the classiest place in college basketball, until I met a fan on the way out," Pitino concluded. "It always reminded me of a class place, but they're getting just like some of the other places now."
North Carolina coach Roy Williams told the press that he was not aware of the incident until after the game, but said he apologized to his rival coach.
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"I don't like that," Williams stated. "We're North Carolina. We don't have to be like everybody else. You can raise Cain, you can boo, but you don't have to say stuff that we as coaches have to put up with on the road. I hope that never happens again at North Carolina."
According to NCAA.com, Louisville has a dismal 0 to 5 record against the Top-25 Atlantic Coast Conference teams, but has won six of its last seven contests.
Meanwhile, North Carolina has emerged victorious in four of its last five games.