UNC coach apologizes for calling NC State fans ‘classless’
North Carolina women’s basketball coach Courtney Banghart released a statement Monday apologizing to NC State fans after calling them “classless” on a podcast.
Banghart appeared on “The Tar Heel Show”, a podcast run by George Harmer, from Norwich, England. He asked Banghart who she liked beating more, NC State or Duke.
“You ask me who I hate the least,” Banghart said. “…I hate them both probably more than I should because I don’t have the history everybody has. Duke is a national and international rivalry that I love. NC State fans are so classless that I don’t even like going there.
She continued, “I have more respect for Duke, but I like beating them because they’re more relevant. NC State is just being mean to us and each other.
In her apology, Banghart said that as a leader she was responsible for leading, “in a thoughtful and respectful way:”
“While intending to maintain the competitive energy between two passionate fans, I have gone too far. I have casually used the word ‘classless’ in reference to passionate NC State fans and deeply regret my choice of words. That doesn’t exactly describe my feelings, for one thing, and there’s no room for name-calling. That said, I do want to publicly apologize, first and foremost, to the players and coaches who have worked tirelessly to be great at NC State I also want to apologize to the Wolfpack fan base I have the utmost respect for the uniqueness of rivalries in our state as they help our game be great “Everyone involved in my program, the NC State program, and the communities of both schools deserve better. And you will get it from me in the future.”
Harmer, who has no affiliation with the university, goes by British Tar Heel on Twitter. He has since made the podcast private on his YouTube channel and deleted the original teaser clip from his Twitter feed.
It was the second time Banghart, entering his fourth season with the Tar Heels, has drawn the ire of Wolfpack fans. They took it as an affront on the eve of their January win over UNC when she described Reynolds Coliseum as “a small gym, so it doesn’t take much to sell it.”
The ACC has yet to release its conference schedule, but chances are Banghart’s comments will add some spice to UNC-NC State’s opener this season. Banghart is 2-4 against the Pack in three seasons and 0-3 at Raleigh.
This story was originally published August 15, 2022 9:02 p.m.