The mother of one of North Carolina's basketball players, Armando Bacot, says via social media that threats have been made against his life.
Christie Lomax wrote on Twitter less than an hour after the UNC athletics department issued two statements, one attributed to players and managers and one from basketball coach Roy Williams, regarding a video showing players partying without masks that prompted postponement of the basketball game against Miami.
"It brings me great concern that there have been threats toward my son, Armando Bacot's life, by individuals; one, who don't know him nor our family personally and two, did not know the whole story and truth," Lomax wrote in a tweet.
"We are all dealing in a time that is extremely unfamiliar, making adjustments can be hard and not doing the things we love can make us sad. I understand. At no time is it OK to threaten someone, it's unnecessary and downright evil. Let's not forget to love ourselves so that we can pass on love to others. God loves us all, Prayers to All."
The players' and managers' statement from the athletics department doesn't list an author. The statement offers an apology but also hints that Williams brought up the incident with them more than once.
"We apologize for not adhering to the University’s and athletic department’s guidelines and apologize to Coach Williams and his staff for not stepping forward when he first addressed it with us on Sunday," the statement read.
Williams' statement said he appreciated their apology.
"They’ve been fantastic for more than eight months in the way they have dealt with the whole situation with the virus," Williams' statement said. "But they realize they did make a mistake, for which they are paying a very significant price.”
A UNC official wouldn't offer clarification about the statements or disclose whether the party participants would face discipline.
The Daily Tar Heel, Carolina's student newspaper, posted a story late Sunday with Snapchat video from the party showing Armando Bacot and Day'Ron Sharpe at a party with other people, with none appearing to be wearing masks. The Tar Heels had won at Duke, 91-87, hours earlier.
The postponement of the game against Miami was announced two hours before tipoff Monday, but the ACC did not disclose a reason for the decision in its statement and would not offer further details.
Miami coach Jim Larrañaga, after learning about the video, spoke with his athletics director, Blake James, and team and also with Carolina officials, he told the Miami Herald.
"We have been quarantining, hibernating, whatever you want to call it," Larrañaga told the Herald, "and we don’t want to put ourselves in a position (to get the virus)."
Carolina is 7-4 in the ACC and 12-6 overall, having won seven of its nine games in 2021 to begin a push toward securing an NCAA Tournament berth. The Tar Heels are scheduled to play the most recent national champion, No. 9 Virginia (9-1, 13-3), at 6 p.m. Saturday in Charlottesville.
The statement attributed to players and managers also closed with advice.
"We are hopeful we will be able to play again soon," the statement read, "and wish to remind everyone to stay safe so this pandemic will be over as soon as possible.”
Eddie Wooten is sports editor of the Winston-Salem Journal and the News & Record in Greensboro.