Jan 15, 2012; Springfield, MA, USA; New Hampton Huskies forward Noah Vonleh (35) shoots the ball against Notre Dame Crusaders forward Matt Atewe (23) during the first half at Blake Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-US PRESSWIRE

UNC Basketball Recruiting: The Reality of the Heels Recent Struggles


The sky is falling!  Roy Williams has lost his recruiting touch!  The University of North Carolina does not get the recruits they go after anymore because they are not an elite destination anymore!  Kentucky and their head coach Jon Calipari is a much more attractive destination and Coach Cal is outsmarting and out recruiting Roy!  These are all things I’ve heard over and over again when discussing recruiting with fans of UNC.  They are all wrong, here’s the reality of the situation.

The sky is not falling, UNC is still one of the elite destinations in college basketball, Carolina is still the best college basketball program in the nation.  So what’s the reason why prospects such as Austin Nichols, Jabari Parker and Julius Randle have eliminated UNC from consideration?  Why hasn’t Troy Williams and Kennedy Meeks committed yet?  Why is Noah Vonleh’s high school coach saying that UNC is not one of the top four schools gaining his attention right now?

Simple, UNC cannot guarantee kids the biggest thing that they want when choosing a program right now, playing time.  Roy Williams does not build a program the same way Calipari does.  He builds depth by mixing players who project to stay in school 3-4 years along with a few sprinkled in top prospects who could potentially leave after a year or two.

Even in a “rebuilding” year like this upcoming season, the Heels have plenty of depth.  When most programs lose four first round picks to the NBA Draft, they need to start all over, not North Carolina.  When prospects in the 2013 and 2014 classes look at UNC as a potential destination, this is what they see.

2013
PG – Marcus Paige(So.), Nate Britt(Fr.), & Luke Davis (Jr.)
SG – Leslie McDonald(Sr.) & PJ Hairston(Jr.)
SF – Reggie Bullock(Sr.) & JP Tokoto(So.)
PF – Brice Johnson(So) & Isiah Hicks(Fr.)
C – Joel James(So.) & Desmond Hubert(Jr.)

The lineup above assumes that sophomore James Michael McAdoo will not be back for his junior season. That’s a pretty big assumption, McAdoo very well could become one of the top players in college basketball this season and head off to the NBA.  He also could end up with an injury or a disappointing season and come back to Chapel Hill for his junior season.

Prospects look at the roster above and they don’t see opportunity.  Carolina fans are assuming that McAdoo will leave and that after a successful season, a couple others will leave along with him.  It’s foolish to expect prospects to assume that and wager their futures on the unknown.  A program like Kentucky can offer guaranteed playing time to several prospects each and every year, other programs without the depth that Carolina enjoys can also offer prospects a comfortable spot in their rotation.

Lastly, Carolina fans need to realize that not only is this team a very good team especially for one considered in a “rebuilding” phase, they also have two very good prospects already committed in 2013.

Tags: North Carolina Tar Heels

  • forza heels

    I agree that this is a good argument for wings, point guards, or even good big men like Meeks, but I don’t think that elite prospects like Randle or Vonleh looked at the current roster and thought they’re not gonna have enough playing time. We’ll probably have a great team next year but we need Vonleh to really be thinking of a Final Four appearance, as McAdoo will probably leave and Johnson and James might need more time to develop into quality big men.

    • Keeping_It_Heel

      what about the fact that the elites want to be “the man”? hope to see you in the forums

  • Captain Arctic

    Matt – unrelated to the post – I have not been able to get into the Forum for several days now and was not sure how to contact you. Not sure what the problem is, but I get the error below over and over. Let me know if you are aware of this or if it might be on my end. Thanks,

    Internal Server ErrorThe server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.
    Please contact the server administrator, root@localhost and inform them of the time the error occurred, and anything you might have done that may have caused the error.More information about this error may be available in the server error log.

    • Keeping_It_Heel

      we’ve had some problems with it and our tech guy just got back, he is working on it now. I get that from time time and clear my cache and can get in but the look isn’t perfect right now. should be fixed perfect real soon. sorry man!

    • Keeping_It_Heel

      everything is fixed, just make sure you clear out your old cookies/cache and it will work perfectly

      • Captain Arctic

        Thanks Matt. All seems to be working fine now!

  • Sevydamus

    If Kentucky can get a bunch of kids to agree there gonna split minutes & still be successful there is not reason Roy Williams can’t so the same.There are plenty of minutes to go around especially up front.As I do like having players that will develop & be at UNC for multiple of yrs.Still should be able to get one in done’s that can feel the same roll as a Marvin Williams & still get picked high

    • Hmmmmm…

      Don’t think you are following along or just did not read the article…..A freshman at Kentucky does not really have to split time. Last years starting rotation is gone, so as a freshman you can come in and take those minutes right away…..and this is becoming a yearly thing; expecting most to go pro. At UNC, you truly have to earn those minutes, and you are not sure who is going pro; so you come and now have to sit behind a Barnes who was not a one and done.

  • [email protected]

    Not mention these prospects don’t have to worry about academics at U K

  • noitallman

    mark my words, reggie bullock will be gone. he is going to end up all-acc and perhaps all-american [maybe 3rd team] and enter the draft.

    • Keeping_It_Heel

      I completely agree with you that Bullock or at least another perimeter player will be gone after a breakout 2012 season. BUT my point is that prospects can’t count on that. hope to see you in the forums.