Three Reasons Why Brandon Ingram Should Pick UNC


We all know who he is.  We all know where he might go.

Brandon Ingram has been all over the sporting-world news lately as his college selection could not only swing the Duke-North Carolina rivalry if he were to go to either program, but affect the entire landscape of college basketball in 2016.

Naturally, North Carolina fans agree that Chapel Hill is certainly the best choice for Ingram, arguing that (1) he will fit nicely in the rotation with the early departure of J.P. Tokoto, (2) Carolina already has the other pieces in place – Ingram can be the hero to push them to that next level, and (3) it is ultimately where he wants to go.

And when thoughtfully considered, North Carolina is a great choice for Ingram.

1) Tokoto’s Early Departure

From a basketball standpoint, Tokoto’s decision to enter the 2015 NBA Draft has only increased Ingram’s worth to the Tar Heels and to head coach Roy Williams.  In pursuing Ingram, Williams is essentially agreeing to terms that he typically doesn’t entertain.

For starters, Ingram essentially has a spot in the starting lineup, and it would come with minimal change in team chemistry.  His likely starting status from the jump is something head Coach Roy Williams doesn’t do for just anyone, although Justin Jackson did so last year.

Coach Williams also has admitted to being content with Ingram staying in Chapel Hill for only one year.  According to John McCann of The Herald Sun, Williams “likes really, really, really good players.”

"“If you tell me [there’s] Marvin Williams’ identical twin, and identical in every way of the world, I’d get on a plane after the game tomorrow and fly out to Bremerton. Even if I knew he was going to be here for one year, I’d be the happiest guy on that airplane.”"

Tokoto’s departure has without a doubt added significance to Ingram’s decision, and even has Roy Williams willing to bend some of his coaching philosophies.  In layman’s terms, Brandon Ingram would be valued at North Carolina.

2) Carolina’s Experience and Preset Pieces

North Carolina Tar Heels
North Carolina Tar Heels /

North Carolina Tar Heels

Even without Ingram, the Tar Heels will be one of the most formidable opponents in the nation.   You won’t find many point guards as productive as a healthy, returning Marcus Paige, and Brice Johnson and Kennedy Meeks lead an incredibly deep and talented frontcourt for the Tar Heels.

Ingram would give the Heels the firepower offensively to push them to the next level.  His ability to shoot from the outside will provide relief for Paige as he is traditionally North Carolina’s sole prolific three-point shooter.  And when considering Justin Jackson on the wing, North Carolina could very well have the longest and tallest starting five in the nation.

Ingram doesn’t have much to prove at the college level in regards to talent and potential.  He has the size and all the tools that could very well shape a successful NBA career.  In fact, per, Ingram is already projected to go 6th in the 2016 NBA Draft.

Now all there is to do is win, with Ingram being a critical part to a team’s success.  North Carolina can give him that opportunity.

3) UNC Is Where He Wants to Go

Ingram has implied in the past that if North Carolina wasn’t having issues regarding the complicated academic scandal that has expanded over time, he may have already committed to be a Tar Heel.

Per Jack Legwin of ZagsBlog, Ingram shared that North Carolina’s actions through the 2014-2015 season weigh heavy on his decision (interview published 12/23/14).

"“Of course it affects my decision,” Ingram said. “I really like those guys a lot, and I really like all of the colleges a lot, so I’m just waiting to see what’s going to happen because it will affect my decision a lot. Seeing if they’re going to get into the NCAA Tournament, or seeing if they shy away from anything, it definitely does affect the decision though.”"

Ingram played for Jerry Stackhouse’s grassroots team, Stackhouse Elite, he attended the same high school as former North Carolina forward Reggie Bullock, and North Carolina made a run in the NCAA tournament despite unresolved off the court distractions.  The Tar Heels have proven that they are not afraid to “shy away” from anything.

And let’s face it, if Ingram wasn’t extremely interested in becoming part of the Carolina family, he would’ve dropped UNC as a school he was considering a while ago.

There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that Ingram will be a positive addition to whichever program he goes to, but if he were to become a Tar Heel, he’d be a valued centerpiece to a talented, veteran squad.