Mar 24, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels forward James Michael McAdoo (43) dribbles the ball in the second half of the game against the Kansas Jayhawks during the third round of the NCAA basketball tournament at the Sprint Center. Kansas won 70-58. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Stay or Go Pro? The Case for James Michael McAdoo to Stay Put at UNC

The NBA Draft takes place on Thursday June 27th at Madison Square Garden in New York, New York.  As is the question almost annually when the North Carolina Tar Heels season ends is who will stay in school and continue to hone their skills at the collegiate level and who will take the plunge and head to the NBA.

James Michael McAdoo could have went pro last season as a projected lottery pick following an impressive showing in March filling in for the injured John Henson.  McAdoo chose to return to Carolina for his sophomore season after struggling most of his freshman season in a limited role off the bench.

McAdoo was chosen as a preseason All-American and was expected to lead the Tar Heels to the promised land after playing just 15 minutes per game his freshman season and struggling to find his rhythm.  McAdoo improved his game in almost every area but failed to live up to the lofty expectations set before the season.

Roy Williams recently had this to say about the Tar Heels three leading scorers and their NBA chances this season.

“We’ll look into it and see,’’ he said. “I don’t feel the sense of urgency right now with it that as I have in years’ past. We were an 8-seed [in the NCAA tournament]. We finished third in the league. We had 11 losses. The NBA usually likes to find those guys that come off teams that won 30 games and go to the Final Four. And our guys understand that. That’s not saying anything negative.”

As the season went on, McAdoo’s name slid further and further down NBA Mock Draft’s and he went from a sure thing lottery pick to a huge question mark.  McAdoo failed to make the natural progression expected of him this season.  Seen as a face up player with a ton of skill and athleticism, a back to the back game was assumed by most as the next step in his evolution.  McAdoo had some great games and his skill level is undeniable, he has yet to show that he has the skill set of a typical big man, often bullied inside the paint on the defensive end and unable to establish himself as the true post presence the UNC offense desperately needed.

[Related: The Case for P.J. Hairston to Stay at UNC]

McAdoo needs to return to Chapel Hill in a bad way if he wants to become a successful NBA player.  He needs to work hard on developing a post game to go along with his face up skills.  Adding a little more bulk would go a long way defending the post against some of college basketball’s elite big men as well.  As of right now any NBA GM drafting McAdoo is taking a huge risk as to whether or not he can develop these skills at the pro level.

Tags: James Michael McAdoo North Carolina Tar Heels

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