CHICAGO — Isaiah Hicks knew immediately that he was going to play basketball at the University of North Carolina.So the final decision was an easy one for the 6-foot-8-inch power forward out of Oxford, North Carolina.
“I was excited but before I even got recruited by them (North Carolina), I said I was going to go to Carolina,” said Hicks Tuesday at the McDonalds All American Game media day. “Being recruited by them just made me really believe I really can go there”.
Hicks is one of 25 players playing in the McDonalds All American Game this week in Chicago. The 36th annual game features the best high school basketball talent in the country, and has seen players like Derrick Rose, Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Kevin Durant play in the event.
Joining Hicks is fellow UNC recruit Kennedy Meeks, a 6-foot-10-inch center out of Charlotte, North Carolina.
For Meeks, the decision to go to North Carolina was more of an honor for him. “It’s just a comfortable team. Everyone gets along and hangs out with each other, it just felt right,” said Meeks. “It really is an honor to play basketball there”.
The two look to be the next key pieces in Carolina’s reloading years after the team lost four first round draft picks to the NBA in 2012.
Hicks and Meeks will be partnered with fellow freshman Nate Britt, and they both seem excited to play with Britt next season. “Nate is a good player. He will fit this team well, and give us another scoring threat,” said Hicks.
As for the McDonald’s All American Game itself, the players are soaking up the atmosphere and enjoying while they can.
“It’s a great experience and a little overwhelming. I think it’s going to help me in the long run and looking back at it,” said Hicks.
For Meeks, the experience so far has been a little bit of a struggle, but the big physical center has held his own in the two practices before the game. “I’m not used to playing with this type of talent year round. So at first, I think that’s why I was struggling.”
After all, with a loaded class at this years All American Game, standing out isn’t an easy thing to do. Meeks is confident he will have a good performance during the game, and next season at North Carolina.
Even with all the festivities going on this week, I still wanted to ask the two recruits what their main goal for next season was. To Tar Heel fans across the country, this will be a comforting thing to hear, especially coming from two young gentleman
Both responded with, “Win the ACC first and foremost”.
The future is bright Carolina.