|This article relies too much on references to primary sources. (November 2008)|
|Based in||Chapel Hill, North Carolina|
Inside Carolina is an independent magazine and web site devoted to the University of North Carolina athletics. The site covers North Carolina football, men's basketball, baseball and recruiting. Its staff is composed of professional journalists who provide its readers with coverage of Tar Heel sports and recruiting. It features game reports, commentary, news, photography, and video clips. All content is original to the Inside Carolina staff of journalists or the Scout.com network.
Best known for its internet site, "IC," as it is popularly called, is the busiest site on the Scout.com web network, which is owned by FoxSports. IC is the most popular independent college team site on the Internet. It attracts nearly 400 000 visits per day from over 21 000 members (http://mb23.scout.com/binsidecarolina.boardStatsLink). Its famous message boards get almost 6000 posts each day, including some from national sports journalists.
Inside Carolina publishes a rapidly growing monthly color magazine featuring in-depth analysis, stories, and interviews with North Carolina players and coaches.
IC has been cited by Sports Illustrated (5/19/2003) as the leading source for independent, insider information on Tar Heel sports. Inside Carolina was also prominently featured in the New York Times bestselling book To Hate Like This Is To Be Happy Forever by Will Blythe (HarperCollins, 2006), as seen in a Sports Illustrated (01/30/2006) highlight of the publication.
Inside Carolina magazine was founded by David Eckoff in early 1994 as a monthly magazine. Later that year, Eckoff added a web site to go along with the print publication. Some of the early writers for IC included Darcy Miller, Bob Heymann, Darrell Lucus, Adam Lucas, Thad Williamson, Andrew Jones and Michelle Donahue Hillison. Eckoff sold the publication to TheTarPit owner Buck Sanders in late 2000, and Sanders merged it with UNCBasketball.com (named by the November 27, 2000 edition of ESPN Magazine as the top college hoops site) in 2001. Ben Sherman, creator of UNCBasketball.com, now serves as editor in chief of the website and print magazine. The editorial staff includes J.B. Cissell, Tommy Ashley, Michelle Hillison and Greg Barnes as well as photographer Jim Hawkins. Regular writers in the magazine include Sanders, Cissell, Ashley, Mike McCracken, Mark Simpson-Vos, Alfred Hamilton and Jack Morton. The publication is fully credentialed by UNC, the ACC and the NCAA.
Inside Carolina is nationally famous among sports fans and journalists for its message boards. On these boards, Carolina fans discuss the various college teams, and also shoot the breeze.
The message boards provide a public forum for discussion of controversies surrounding UNC sports. Most notably, rumors of widespread discontent with former head coach Matt Doherty were disseminated on the message boards throughout much of 2002 and 2003, long before such reports hit the mainstream media. Doherty resigned under pressure after the 2002-03 season.
The boards have also had a host of athletes, their parents, coaches and other figures in the world of high school recruiting posting on them.
Each message board branch has a respective Premium version, available to paid subscribers of the IC/Scout.com website. The various message boards include UNC Basketball, UNC Baseball and other UNC Sports, and the UNC Ticket Exchange. In addition to this is The Tar Pit, designated for UNC Football discussion, and the ZiggaZoomba Lounge, an off-topic board for discussions not relating to UNC Sports. The message boards themselves are moderated by staff and volunteers.
An offshoot of the message boards, live moderated chats are run for each Carolina basketball and football game, recruiting updates and other events.