North Carolina coach Roy Williams was “doing well” after a vertigo attack forced him to miss most of the second half of the Tar Heels’ 68-65 victory at Boston College on Tuesday night. The team announced Williams’ health update through its Twitter account after its flight back to North Carolina.
Steve Kirschner, a team spokesman, said on Wednesday that he expects Williams to lead practice on Thursday and coach the Tar Heels on Sunday when they play against Pittsburgh at the Smith Center. UNC has an off day Wednesday and Williams told his staff to expect him in the office in the afternoon, Kirschner said.
Williams collapsed amid a vertigo attack with about 14 ½ minutes remaining in the game Tuesday at Boston College. It happened after Williams addressed an official during a timeout. Williams spun around quickly, walked to the UNC bench and slowly collapsed into a seated position.
He slowly walked off of the court under his own power but with assistance and guidance from Doug Halverson, the team’s head athletic trainer. Halverson provided Williams with medicine that Halverson carries specifically for the possibility that Williams might suffer a vertigo attack.
“I was able to throw up a little bit,” Williams said after the game on Tuesday. “I thought I’d throw up really a lot because that’s usually what happens.”
Williams said he had been diagnosed on three occasions with benign positional vertigo, which can occur when a piece of “bone-like calcium” floats inside the fluid-filled tubes in the inner ear, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine’s website. Symptoms include a sense of spinning and loss of balance and can be triggered by head movements, according to the site.
Williams has suffered from the attacks for the past 17 or 18 years, he said, but his experience with vertigo-like symptoms goes back even further.
“This is the first time I’ve really had one during a game,” he said.