White Phantoms

From the 1920s through the early 1950s the men's basketball team was known informally as the "White Phantoms." They were still the Tar Heels; this was an unofficial nickname used often by journalists, similar to how University of Virginia sports teams were sometimes referred to as "Wahoos," a term still used by fans of the University of Virginia and journalists. The nickname was probably first used by a journalist in Atlanta watching the team during the 1925 Southern Conference championship. At the time the basketball players wore white uniforms with a blue "NC" logo on the chest. The name is also said to refer to the fast, fluid play of the team. UNC was not the only team with an unofficial nickname. A 1927 newspaper headline, "Red Terrors and White Phantoms Meet Tonight," referred to a basketball game between Carolina and N.C. State.