CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Roy Williams on the sideline and an easy victory were welcome sights for North Carolina fans.
Rashad McCants scored 18 points and handed out a career-high eight assists as the 10th-ranked Tar Heels cruised in Williams' debut, posting a 90-64 victory over Old Dominion.
North Carolina (1-0) fired Matt Doherty after failing to reach the NCAA Tournament in back-to-back seasons, luring Williams back to his alma mater from Kansas. The fiery coach was his usual self, giving guard Melvin Scott a strange look after a questionable shot and arguing with the officials in the final minute of the blowout.
"I think I had a few more chills when I came out of the tunnel," Williams said. "I wasn't nervous. I haven't been nervous since I played in the 10th grade."
After the game, Williams shook hands with Old Dominion coach Blaine Taylor, then quickly jogged off the Smith Center floor to address his team. The Tar Heels went 19-16 last season under Doherty - a former assistant to Williams at Kansas.
Taylor realized his team was the perfect patsy.
"Well, everything went according to script," he said. "They are good, coach Williams is good. There was a great crowd and a great environment."
Williams, who is 419-101 overall, improved his winning percentage to .806 - tops among active coaches.
"It is a new beginning," said McCants, who reportedly clashed with Doherty last season. "We are just coming out here playing every game like it is our last."
The Tar Heels were boosted by a strong return from Sean May who missed the entire Atlantic Coast Conference schedule last season after breaking his left foot in December. May was 7-of-9 for 17 points, Scott netted 15 points and point guard Raymond Felton had six assists.
Felton, prone to turnovers along with spectacular plays as a freshman, was more in control as North Carolina was efficient throughout. The Tar Heels shot 62 percent (37-of-60) and McCants came up with four of the team's 12 steals.
"Everybody played hard and played together," Felton said. "It is not our best game, but it is a good start."
Abdi Libonde led Old Dominion with 15 points off the bench. The Monarchs shot a dismal 30 percent (10-of-33) in the first half as the Tar Heels built a 40-23 halftime cushion.