Theo Pinson scored 25 points and made a monster dunk late in the game that seemed the take the life out of the No. 3 seed Canes.
"It depends on what the committee decides", head coach Jim Boeheim said.
The Heels follow up last night's job well done with a rematch tonight against a risky Miami team that just got through spoiling their Senior Night last week. (This year) we beat Louisville and we beat Miami.
"It just depends on what the committee decides", he continued. Thursday was the senior's sixth double-double in 14 games after just one in his first 104 games at UNC.
One day removed from Marek Dolezaj's breakout performance in a 73-64 win over Wake Forest, the default settings got turned back on for Syracuse. The floor was cramped and the offense debilitated against a defense packed all the way in - daring Tyus Battle, Frank Howard and Oshae Brissett to be five players when they are only three. UP NEXT North Carolina: The Tar Heels split with Duke this season, each winning at home. The Tar Heels will now matchup with second-seeded Duke in the nightcap Friday, with top-seeded Virginia playing fourth-seeded Clemson at 7pm.
North Carolina averages 42.9 rebounds per game, which ranks first in the NCAA. He hit 5 of 6 3-pointers and shot 70 percent overall on his way to 23 points.
"Woody would always look at me and say, 'I'm here for you, ' and I haven't ever forgotten that", Montgomery recalled.
"He just knew so much more about the Carolina players and the coaching staff, he would have insights of the television broadcasters wouldn't have", explained Jarrett.
"They did a great job of flooding the paint, staying in front of us, and they're a great defensive team", Howard said.
They'll play No. 18 West Virginia or Baylor on Friday night for a spot in the title game. The senior point guard, who hit the winning 40-footer at Carolina on February 27, hit a pair of 3s for the first time this season. "It's a special thing to be a part of and I'm really excited for [Friday's] game".
Matt Coleman added 20 points for No. 7 seed Texas, which got star freshman Mo Bamba back from a toe sprain that had caused him to miss three games.
For many University of North Carolina men's basketball and football fans, the voice of longtime radio announcer Woody Durham still echo in their minds - from the jubilation at the final seconds of the four national championships the men won with Durham on the microphone, to the moments of worry when he would tell listeners to "go where you go and do what you do". Syracuse was only able to come within nine points of the Tar Heels.
Comparatively, Syracuse struggled to get the ball below the arc.
Berry and wing Cam Johnson each went down temporarily with injury scares for UNC (24-9) in a wild second half. Lopez then drew a foul while backing into the low post with 0.6 seconds left, and he coolly made both free throws.
The Longhorns, who survived a tough game against Iowa State in the opening round, misfired on their first nine shots, went almost 6 minutes without a point and allowed the Red Raiders to roar to an early double-digit lead that they maintained much of the first half.