Originally posted on Fox Sports Carolinas  |  Last updated 2/18/12
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- Harrison Barnes must really like the color orange. The North Carolina sophomore small forward brings out his best whenever the Tar Heels take on Clemson. And in the fourth installment of Barnes versus the Tigers on Saturday afternoon at the Smith Center, the "Black Falcon" soared, like he did in the first three meetings. Barnes put on an impressive display scoring 24 points, grabbing seven rebounds and showing increased aggressiveness in UNC's 74-52 victory. After the game, the Carolina star admitted what had become quite apparent. "I don't know, man, I always have good games against them," he said, referring to the Tigers. "Ever since they came here, at their place, (Clemson forward) Milton Jennings returned the favor to me today. I just love playing Clemson." In his first of three meetings against the Tigers, all of which occurred last season, Barnes totaled 13 points, but hit the go-ahead basket in a 10-point Carolina victory. He then scored 20 in a 64-62 win at Littlejohn Coliseum, and in the ACC Tournament, Barnes poured in a career-high 40 points on 12-for-17 shooting. Reminded after that game that BYU's Jimmer Fredette, the nation's leading scorer and eventual National Player of the year, scored 52 the night before, but on 32 field goal attempts, Barnes smiled and responded with a simple word, "efficiency." Barnes was fairly efficient Saturday. He drilled half of his 18 field goal attempts, but he did manage three turnovers. It was a sluggish day at times for the Tar Heels, though, and when Carolina broke free from whatever was shackling it some in the first half, Barnes was there leading the way. On a couple of occasions, the game was challenging enough that UNC ran some specific plays to get Barnes looks. One paid off, the other almost did. But the consciousness of Barnes' appetite for the ball more and more was obliged by his coach. That's a darn good sign if baby blue runs through your veins. "We have a couple of sets where we try to clear space for him to allow him to do that," UNC coach Roy Williams said. "He does have an ability to put the ball on the floor a little bit. He's almost 6-foot-8, and so when you have that ability to put it on the floor and shoot the basketball like he does, I think you have good things like that happen." In UNC's last five games, Barnes is averaging just below 21 points and right at seven rebounds. Barnes said he and Williams have a secret bet that has to do with him grabbing 10 rebounds in a game. He won't divulge what happens to the loser each game, but smiled and acknowledged it's on the up and up. "By contract, I can't say," Barnes joked. But his play against Clemson hasn't been a joke, and the trajectory of his performances has become a serious boon to North Carolina's recent ascent. Blown late lead against Duke aside, the Tar Heels have closed out their last four victories in impressive fashion. Barnes is a major reason why. Once a bit passive, now he's assertive and is better using his immense physical strength. Then again, seeing Clemson's orange might to him might enlist the same reaction in Barnes that spinach did for Peopeye. "He's a great player, and we don't have a guy that's his size that matches up very well," Clemson coach Brad Brownell said. "You've got so many guys you're trying to stop, it's hard to do a good job on him." The proof has been in the performances.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Sanu: Halftime show played role in Super Bowl collapse

James Dolan is among potential group of investors of new arena for New York Islanders

Report: Rams, Clippers discussing NBA venue in Inglewood

Terrence Jones reportedly interested in joining Celtics

LeBron reverses course, says he ‘always felt good’ about Cavs

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Ole Miss tried to implicate Mississippi State in football scandal

Jamaal Charles could be on the roster bubble

Jimmy Butler on state of Bulls: ‘I just want to win at all costs’

Report: Giants will be ‘aggressive’ in trying to sign Jason Pierre-Paul

Report: Porzingis avoided ligament damage in ankle

Brooks Koepka meltdown includes whiff, stomping head off driver

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Box Score 2/24: A night of NBA disrespect

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Top 10 shortstops in baseball for 2017

The most dangerous NBA teams flying under the radar

Eat, Drink, Watch: Your award-worthy weekend planning guide

Grading the NBA trade deadline on the Vince Carter scale

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker