Carrier Classic blog

Pair of sailors on USS Carl Vinson will have rooting interest

Posted November 10, 2011
Updated November 11, 2011

— When the University of North Carolina Tar Heels take on Michigan State Friday in the Carrier Classic on the flight deck of the USS Carl Vinson, there will be two sailors in attendance with clear allegiances.

Peter Locklear, from Pembroke, N.C., and Charles Hobson, from Wilmington, N.C., both serve on the USS Carl Vinson, and neither thought they would see the day when as basketball game would be played there.

"I didn't believe it at first, I thought it was a joke," said Locklear.

UNC has support of form two Vinson sailors UNC has support of form two Vinson sailors

"It's hard to believe anything like this could ever happen," said Hobson. "It was one of those, ‘I will believe it when I see it’ and here it is."

A court on an aircraft carrier, in a game featuring the favorite team of the North Carolina sailors, the Tar Heels, is in fact happening.

"I grew up watching Antwan Jamison and Vince Carter and Michael Jordan,” said Hobson. “I've never even been to a game, so to go to my first Tar Heel game on the ship I work on is a great experience."

The players from each team got to visit the USS Carl Vinson Wednesday, but Thursday was their first chance to test it out from a basketball viewpoint.

“My first thought was ‘Wow,’ said UNC guard Kendall Marshall. “I went to go take a jump shot and all you see is sky behind you. You’re used to seeing a student section or fans.”

UNC holds Carrier shoot around UNC holds Carrier shoot around

The sailors who serve on the ship had a chance to be on leave while it was docked for the game but most opted to stay for the historic game. They know they will have some work to do to make it up to family members.

"I bought 10 t-shirts last night,” said Locklear. “I am hoping there is some kind of signature session, I am going to send it to my brothers, my uncles and my dad."

For the sailors that did stay behind to take in the game, it will be an unprecedented experience. For the players and coaches involved, they will be providing that, but taking away a greater lesson.

“We provide entertainment,” said UNC head coach Roy Williams. “Those men and women in the military are sacrificing. We’re not sacrificing.”

15 Comments

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  • The Fox Nov 11, 2011

    View quoted thread


    I think he was refering to the ABOers no the ABCers.

  • StunGunn Nov 11, 2011

    View quoted thread


    Well, the avatars that made it past the Mods sure were original! Good to see the Carolina Blue back, though. I guess I can change mine tomorrow.

  • kmor27886 Nov 11, 2011

    View quoted thread


    darkness is spreading

  • Go Lee County Nov 11, 2011

    Clear the runway, Black Falcon landing!!!!!!

  • heelman73 Nov 11, 2011

    View quoted thread


    I'm pretty sure the sailors cleaned it off quite well before the court was put down. Thanks for your interest, though.

  • GoLower Nov 11, 2011

    View quoted thread


    LOL...ABCers now hoping for an Act of God to stop the Heels, because they know their sorry teams will FAIL at it. Poor things.

    CAW CAW!!!CAW CAW!!!

  • timbo10.0 Nov 11, 2011

    Here's hoping for a rogue wave to clean off the deck.....

  • GoLower Nov 11, 2011

    Well, I tried to go a week with the state college avatar as the "bet" dictated, but apparently it left too many wusspackers all hiney-hurt so they complained to the mods who never would display them. So typical of hiney-hurt wusspackers.

    Enough...time for some CAW CAW!!!

    CAW ca CAW!!!!

  • kmor27886 Nov 11, 2011

    Sailors and Chapel Hill.......go together like peas and carrots!!!!

  • Rdi73162 Nov 11, 2011

    Golo, feeling lonesome here? lol

    the bet was to use an avatar supporting NC State, not TBK :)

    Go Heels !!!!!!

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