J.R. Reid, North Carolina's leading scorer, was suspended for Sunday's NCAA second-round game against UCLA on Saturday for violating curfew Friday night.
Coach Dean Smith made the announcement Saturday afternoon after learning that Reid and Rodney Hyatt, a junior who is being redshirted this season, missed the curfew by a few minutes. Hyatt also was sent back to Chapel Hill."We'll be lucky to be playing next week, but if we are, J.R. and Rodney will be members of our squad," Smith said in a statement released by Rick Brewer, the North Carolina sports information director.
"We have very few rules on our basketball team, and all of our rules are made by our seniors," Smith said. "The coaching staff is pledged to uphold all of them. This is one of the most difficult decisions I've had to make as a head coach due to the importance of the UCLA game to all of our squad members. Our seniors were consulted about this."
The North Carolina-UCLA winner will advance to the NCAA Southeast region semifinals at Lexington, Ky., next weekend, meeting the winner of Sunday's Michigan-South Alabama game.
Brewer said Carolina has a 1 a.m. curfew two nights before a game and a midnight curfew the night before a game.