CHAPEL HILL, NC — Reboots are all the rage in Hollywood these days. 

The latest made its debut Thursday on Netflix.

“That 90s Show” is basically a continuation of its predecessor, featuring many of the same characters and storylines as “That 70s Show.” It’s just been updated with a few new twists to reflect the changing times.

The same holds true for the basketball rivalry between North Carolina and NC State.

The teams, the fans and many of the antagonists remain the same. But since the retirement of Roy Williams prior to last season, there’s something noticeably different as the Tar Heels and Wolfpack get ready to square off Saturday afternoon at Smith Center in the first of their 2 regular-season meetings.

There’s an absence of acrimony in the days leading up to the game.

It’s as if the whacky, sometimes loopy sitcom dad has been replaced by his kinder, gentler child. Or in this case, his former assistant.

Williams and his successor Hubert Davis have a lot in common when it comes to their basketball philosophies and their affinity for Carolina blue Alexander Julian argyle. But when it comes to their views on that team from Raleigh … let’s just say that playing the Wolfpack doesn’t make 1 of them see red the way it did the other.

Ol’ Roy didn’t like the Wolfpack. 

Absolutely hated them.

And he wasn’t shy about letting everyone, including his players, know about it. 

Tar Heels fans in the stands might have taunted State teams in the past with chants of “Not our rival.’ But to Williams, games against the Wolfpack took on something of a mythical quality.

He fancied himself as the white knight protecting the virtuous maiden in the castle tower against the evil horde.

“I’d rather not eat than lose to NC State,” he once said.

Not so with his successor Hubert Davis.

Asked earlier this week if he shares the same kind of passion about the rivalry with the Wolfpack, the 2nd-year UNC coach gave an answer that sounded more like Herb Sendek – the man State fans loved to hate – than Williams.

“I don’t spend any time with that,” Davis said. “I have tremendous respect for all the coaches and programs and universities. It just doesn’t matter. I like competing against everybody. The way I grew up and the way that I was taught, that when you cross the line, it’s live action. 

“Whether it’s NC State, College of Charleston, Duke, Ohio State, once you cross over the line, it’s real. The realness doesn’t get higher depending on a different opponent.”

Davis then doubled down when pressed on whether the rivalry means anything more to his players, since they have more interaction with their fellow students and fans.

“I don’t know and I don’t really care,” he said. “That’s of no benefit or importance to us. Our focus is on getting better and being the best that we can be at whatever game that we play.”

Davis’ Tar Heels will have to be at their best against the Wolfpack on Saturday.

State comes into the game on a 4-game ACC winning streak. And while neither team is ranked in the national polls, the Wolfpack, at No. 25, currently sits 12 spots higher than UNC in the NCAA’s NET ratings. 

So maybe a little rancor to get the adrenaline flowing might now be a bad thing. It certainly worked for Williams.

His record against State in 18 seasons as coach at his alma mater was 33-5. He was 38-5 overall including his time at Kansas.

Call it payback for the pain Norm Sloan, David Thompson and the others inflicted on the Tar Heels and by extension Williams during his time as a student in Chapel Hill in the late 1960s and early ‘70s.

The Wolfpack were a national power at that time and in the middle of a stretch that saw them put together 14 wins in 15 games against UNC. But the losses weren’t the worst of it for the emotional future coach.

“I was a freshman in college and some old high school buddies that I’d played baseball and basketball with were over at State, and they gave me enough crap for the rest of my life,” Williams said before a game against the Wolfpack in 2012. “I didn’t appreciate it and I didn’t like it. So I’ve always had the feeling that this is an important game.”

Williams didn’t play basketball at UNC after his 1 season as a member of the freshman team. So the seedlings of his dislike for State were planted from the perspective of a fan rather than a participant.

Davis’ experience with the Wolfpack also has deep roots. It’s mildy surprising he doesn’t share at least some of Williams’ angst, considering Davis went 3-5 against the Wolfpack, including 0-2 his senior season in 1991-92.

The difference is that Davis played at UNC at a time in which Duke was replacing NC State as the more threatening neighbor. Davis went 6-5 against Duke, and 2 of those wins came in the ACC Tournament championship game. But Duke also won national titles during Davis’ junior and senior seasons. In that vein, his lack of emotion toward the rivalry NC State is understandable.

Winning his first 2 meetings against the Wolfpack as a coach last season, both by double digits, has only reinforced his ambivalence.

But this is a reboot. And reboots are notorious for their surprise plot twists.

Perhaps a State victory on Saturday will provide the spark that kindles the kind of passion Ol’ Roy felt for the rivalry in his kinder, gentler former assistant.

Or at the very least, cause him to lose his appetite for a little while.