View single post by PvtClewell
 Posted: Fri Jan 11th, 2008 12:24 am
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Joined: Wed Jun 13th, 2007
Location: North Carolina USA
Posts: 420

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Tar Heels? Tarheels?

OK, here's the deal. When I came to North Carolina as a budding journalist 31 years ago, I was told that 'Tar Heels' is the nickname for all the University of North Carolina athletic teams, while 'Tarheel' was a resident of the venerable aforementioned state. At the very least, that was the accepted Associated Press style.

About five years ago, the AP changed its style, and 'Tar Heel' (note two distinct words) was now the correct style.

Keep in mind, that was the AP version. In reality, who knows? Here's a current web site definition, for what it's worth. It may — or may not — prove helpful:

Not everybody got the memo. I still see 'Tarheel' as often as not. I even see, on occasion, 'Go Tarheels' (for example) on UNC-sanctioned sports paraphernalia. Go figure (and UNC has a highly respected journalism school, you'd figure they'd know how to spell their own name. Damn media.)

I really think nobody knows for sure. Or nobody cares.

I briefly thought about making this a separate thread except that I figured Texas Defender, ConnYankee and 38 Miss. Walker could give a flip about Tar Heels. Or Tarheels.:)

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