Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak - US PRESSWIRE

Julius Randle Cuts North Carolina

Julius Randle is one of the best high school prospects in the country and the highest rated power forward in his class. Any program that lands him will have a piece that they can build a team around to make a run to a national championship. He’s a can’t miss player that has everyone drooling, but unfortunately, the Tar Heels won’t get to reap the benefits. Earlier this afternoon, Randle trimmed his list down to six universities catching the country by surprise. The news was first sighted by his high school’s (Prestonwood Christian Academy) twitter account and later confirmed by his mother (see below).


Among the schools left off the list, none are more shocking than UNC and Duke especially since Randle had spoken so highly of both programs in recent interviews. Big 12 schools Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas made the cut along with Florida, NC State, and of course, Kentucky. Once again Coach Calipari remains a huge contender for a top prospect. Even though he’s yet to commit anyone in the Top 100 for the 2013-2014 season, we all know that will change before it’s all set in stone.

But what does this mean for the Tar Heels?

It’s hard to say what really and truly influences a young player’s recruiting decision without a formal statement. However, I don’t think the choice had anything to do with Roy William’s effort or that every other suitor took a better approach than him. Perhaps Julius wanted things that are out of Roy’s control. Perhaps Julius wanted to go to a program where he would be the only big man. The Tar Heels have fellow prospect Isaiah Hicks coming in next season as one of the best big men in the country, Joel James and Brice Johnson will have had a season under their belts and then there is James McAdoo, a player that no one has considered will actually stay into his junior season. What if he did? All of a sudden the low block is getting crowded. Obviously Randle is better than most of the names mentioned with the possible exception of Mac, but maybe he wants to play for a program where having to work for a starting spot requires less effort. We all know based on history that Roy will start who he felt has earned it and not based on incoming hype (Marvin Williams, Ed Davis, John Henson).

Until Randle expresses his reasoning, we won’t know why he cut Carolina so early, but Roy and his staff won’t mourn over it forever. There are still other big men out there that Carolina has offered including another top prospect in Noah Vonleh. Vonleh reclassified into the 2013 group a little over a week ago and has set the recruiting world in a frenzy. Everyone knew he was a big prospect, but coaches definitely weren’t planning on having to make a big push for him this early. With Randle out of the picture, Vonleh has to be priority number one for Carolina. I said in my post last week, I think Vonleh is the better signee of the two. He plays both inside and outside where as Randle is a pure big man. In my personal opinion, that add enough value that if the Tar Heels land Vonleh, they don’t lose much ground from not getting Randle, but of course, nothing is a given.

Losing Randle hurts and it hurts badly, but let’s not lose faith in Roy and his staff just yet. This guy is only two years removed from landing the number one class in the nation which means he knows exactly what he’s doing. Chapel Hill and Tar Heel nation will get to rejoice at least one more signing before the 2013 season. Count on it.


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Tags: Julius Randle North Carolina Tar Heels

  • Sevy

    I told you it wouldn’t be UNC,however kinda surprised we didn’t even make the final 6 cut.Something all along told me he just wasn’t feeling UNC as much as he was letting on.Noah would be the better player for us along with Meeks.So get those 2 & Williams & all is fine.

  • Benjamin Williams

    Meeks is bad news. I love Vonleh and Williams. Meeks doesn’t fit this system at all and likely never will.

    • goheels245782930509

      Not at all accurate. I certainly assume you haven’t seen this kid play. I have. Outside of the fact he’s carrying too much weight presently, he’s a perfect fit. Meeks has skills and intangibles some if not most of his piers don’t have and cannot be taught. Altering his conditioning and his dietary intake can be easily resolved, if his work ethic is there. Iv’e always liked this kid and would love to have in state talent. Go watch him play and then make an assesment. His stock can speak for itself continues to rise espn top 20. Jonah the S&C coach can take him to a different level. Prime example Joel James. We need big bodies to go along w/ our athletic floor runners. We’ve been pushed around too many yrs now.

      • Sevy

        I like where your head is at goheels, I like you think he would be a perfect fit & a perfect complement to are other inside players his weight is an issue,but very little if you ask me Sean May & Joel James dropped it for Carolina so will Meeks.I agree 100% with you on we’ve been pushed around to many yrs now & its about time we do some mauling of are own.I would like to see Roy go after some more in state folks & get them to sport that Baby Blue.It sucks we didn’t get Randle,but I”m more pissed that we wasted so much time on him & lost out on so many other good fits for Carolina. Randle will be a bust in the pro’s & maybe even college though I doubt it.Reminds me of Michael Beasley where he could be a 3 or 4 but does neither position really great & that will continue.

  • Tar!Nation!Cj

    Not the first top prospect to go elsewhere and wont be the last. Life goes on. Noah Vonleh seems to be Roy’s top priority right now.

  • Benjamin Williams

    I have seen him play. He is just not a fit. He is a great passing big man. But he isn’t a true banger and I have my doubts that his diet and conditioning will ever be where they need to be to be elite in Roy’s system. Just because he is top 20 doesn’t mean he is a good fit.

  • Tar Heel stuck in KY

    Meeks could really be good with his passing ability. He needs to lose at least 40 pounds, but that is the “easy” part. You can’t teach the hands and feel he has around the rim. With that being said, I really want Vonleh AND Meeks. Vonleh gives the perimeter threat to go with all the length we will have inside.Wouldn’t care to get Williams as well (unless a reclassified Wiggins decided to suit in the beautiful blue).

  • I think its Solomon?

    I’m shocked we didn’t make at least the top 6. Not surprised that we won’t be landing him, however. He’s pretty much UK’s now and has been for a while IMO. I think now, we need Vonleh and TW. Of course, it’s still early, Roy could go after another prospect too. Never know.

  • Captain Arctic

    I am beyond shocked. Not only by by the fact that he cut UNC, but UNC not making the final 6. There HAS to be a story here. Matt? I’m on record as saying he was UNC’s to lose since they have been on him longer than anyone. No logic to me at all as to why it didn’t come down to UK and UNC.

    Obviously I’m happy as hell that UK is still in there. What are the chances that he ends up at NCSU? They may be a wildcard in all of this.

    Williams will very likely land Voneih and T Williams so you all will still be in great, great shape. And who knows – maybe even Parker.

    • Matt Hamm

      yeah I’m pretty shocked, the biggest thing I think is that Roy told him to cut programs he wasn’t going to go to asap so I feel like he cut UNC now for that reason but who knows. I’m working on a follow up to this post now.

  • Matt Hamm

    ANNOUNCEMENT: Keeping It Heel’s forum is finished! I am putting the final touches on it now and it will launch in 24-48 hours tops!!!!

  • jessica oxendine

    It’s time to go all in on Vonleh and Parker. I still think Williams wants to be a Tar Heel. Sad we didn’t get Randle. I kinda have a feeling that with Randle, Texas could be the dark horse with him. He loves football and would get to stay close to home.