The University of North Carolina baseball program started in 1867 and Bob Lawson was their first player to make it to the Major League level.
Have you ever wondered what a "Tar Heel" actually is? The University of North Carolina's website offers the following explanation on their frequently asked questions page:
What is a Tar Heel?
The University not only uses the nickname "Tar Heels," but the entire state does as well. One version of the nickname's origin has the name first being applied to North Carolinians during the Civil War. One record talks of a battle in Virginia, where their supporting column retreated, but North Carolina troops fought alone. The victorious troops were asked in a condescending tone by some Virginians, who had retreated, "Any more tar down in the Old North State, boys?" The response came quickly: "No, not a bit; old Jeff's bought it all up." The Virginians asked: "Is that so? What is he going to do with it?" The reply: "He is going to put it on you'ns heels to make you stick better in the next fight."
Did you know that there are fifty-seven former North Carolina players who made it to the show? Send updates to Baseball Almanac.