UNC Basketball: Key Takeaways from the Season Opener Part II


The Tar Heels tipped off their season against Garner Webb and registered a win in a sloppy 76-59 win (for our game review click HERE).  UNC takes the court again on Sunday against Florida Atlantic, before we look ahead let’s take a look back at some key takeaways from Fridays action.  Don’t miss part I published yesterday on the front page of Keeping It Heel.

Nov 9, 2012; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels forward Brice Johnson (11) shoots over Gardner Webb Runnin Bulldogs center Mike Byron (54) during the game at Dean E. Smith Center. Mandatory Credit: Curtis Wilson-US PRESSWIRE

Desmond Hubert absolutely should not be in the starting lineup: Head coach Roy Williams was still unsure of his starting lineup less than 24 hours before tip off.  He decided on four positions but couldn’t decide between Hubert, Joel James, Brice Johnson and he says he was even considering Jackson Simmons which I don’t believe.  The sophomore Hubert got the nod over the freshman who have clearly outplayed him to this point.

After a dismal first half in which Hubert was shoved around for position on the block and zero contribution on the offensive end, James was given the start in the second half which could be a sign of things to come.  At his post game press conference Roy downplayed the situation stated again that he didn’t know what he would do on Sunday with his lineup.  The minutes were split up pretty evenly amongst the three with Hubert logging 13 minutes to James’ 14 and Johnsons 12.

I like Hubert but he is a four year player who needs major development on the offensive end.  Defensively he has a lot of potential and the kid can rebound.  He added some bulk in the off season but still is not ready for a starting role, he is the fourth best big man on this team and that’s what his role should be.  Look at his line compared to the other Tar Heel big men.

James Michael McAdoo: 26 points, 14 rebounds

Joel James: 6 points, 4 rebounds

Brice Johnson: 6 points, 5 rebounds

Desmond Hubert: 0 points, 4 rebounds, 2 turnovers

Brice Johnson is very skilled offensively: After losing Tyler Zeller and John Henson to the NBA a big question around the Tar Heels was would they be able to rely on anyone in the post.  After McAdoo’s big time performance it’s clear they have a star inside and Johnson showed why he was the South Carolina two time top rated high school player coming in.  Johnson has a very polished post game with a terrific turnaround jumper.  He shot 3-6 from the field and with more opportunities can be a real scoring threat for this team.

Team must shoot better: This is the biggest worry for the Tar Heels so far, they shot bad against Shaw and again struggled from the perimeter against Garner Webb.  The Heels shot just 1-12 from three and must get more out of their perimeter group.  Reggie Bullock hit the only three early in the second half and Roy talked about the need for him to be more aggressive in his post game conference after Bullock attempted just four shots.

UNC has loads of talent on the perimeter and is very inexperienced in the paint, against better competition they need to be able to score from the perimeter.  Bullock, PJ Hairston and Leslie McDonald are the three who need to be the catalyst for creating offense and providing reliable consistent shooting threats a combined 5-16 and 1-9 from three out of this group won’t cut it.