North Carolina basketball coach Roy Williams apologized Thursday for comments he made earlier in the week that compared his disappointment in his struggling team’s season to the suffering in Haiti.
“On February 1st at my weekly radio show I made a comment about a colleague telling me that Haiti was a catastrophe and we were just having a difficult season. I said that does put basketball in perspective,” Williams said in a prepared statement on North Carolina’s official Web site.
“However, Tuesday, at a press conference, I referenced her comment again but I neglected to say that it puts basketball in perspective. In no way am I equating the tragedy in Haiti with basketball. I'm sorry that my statement at the press conference made it seem like I was comparing the two. The people of Haiti are suffering through unimaginably difficult times. I know very well that we are just playing a game.”
Williams on Tuesday had said at the press conference: “Massage therapist told me, she said, ‘You know, coach, what happened in Haiti is a catastrophe. What you’re having is a disappointment.’ And I told her that depends on what chair she was sitting in. Because it does feel like a catastrophe to me, because it is my life.”
Earlier, on his radio show, he made this statement to host Woody Durham: “The young lady that’s our massage therapist, she had the best line ... because that was ... I saw her before the North Carolina State game, and she said, ‘Coach, you may not believe this, or may not feel it all the time, but, what they have in Haiti is a catastrophe. What you have is a disappointment.’ And, it’s true. It’s something ... I said, well right now in my mind and my body, it feels like a catastrophe, but it is. What those people are having to go through is just unbelievable and it does put what we're going through in a different light, but it doesn't make it any easier though Woody, but it does make us understand what we’re facing.”