UNC Basketball: Seventh Woods 2017-18 season preview

LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 17: Seventh Woods
LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 17: Seventh Woods /

Seventh Woods is looking to make the sophomore leap for the Tar Heels this season

Seventh Woods came into North Carolina last season with a lot of hype. The sophomore guard is the subject of what is likely the best high school mix tape of all time. The mix tape has over 15 million views, but Woods has come a long way from those days.

Now, he was likely to be the back-up point guard this season, until we found out Joel Berry will miss the next four weeks with a broken hand. Woods will now assume a greater role for the Tar Heels; at least until Berry returns to the lineup.

There are plenty of reasons that the Tar Heels are looking forward to seeing Woods this season. Last year, Woods struggled with a couple of injuries, but now he’s fully healthy and ready to go.

Woods even posted this video of him throwing down a windmill dunk after practice one day.


It is starting to look like Woods is turning back into the athletic freak that Tar Heel fans hoped he would be.

2016-17 season review

As we all know, freshman point guards typically struggle in the Roy Williams offense. This was the same for Woods.

Woods was the third-string point guard from day one, sitting behind Berry and Nate Britt.

Despite that, Woods appeared in forty games for the Tar Heels last year, and averaged a little over seven minutes per game.

Woods did not fill up the score book in those seven minutes, averaging just 1.5 points per game and shooting 28% from the field.

Woods never scored double-digits last year either. He put up his career-high against Radford, and that was nine points in a game he played 22 minutes. The game against Radford was when Joel Berry initially rolled his ankle, and Woods finished the game strong for the Heels.

Like most players, it was pretty clear the more minutes Woods played, the better he became. When he got in the flow of the offense, he was actually a serviceable player for the Heels.

The great thing for Woods is that he appeared in every game for the Heels last year, so we know he got plenty of experience along the way.

2017-18 role and preview

With Joel Berry out for the first month, Woods will see a huge jump in playing time.

We knew it was going to be a nice jump, but with Berry out, he will definitely see double-digit minutes early in the season.

Woods will likely play double-digit minutes this year, regardless. He and Jalek Felton will split time at point guard early on. But when Berry comes back, I would expect Woods to become the full-time backup to Berry. Felton will likely play off the ball as a two-guard.

All season long, Woods will have to run with the second team, and be the leader of that squad. Last year, that was Nate Britt, and he did an okay job with that. Woods will need to be better than okay if the Heels have any hope of getting back to the Final Four.

With the addition of Felton, Cam Johnson, and the return of Kenny Williams, Woods will not need to shoot threes. It will be imperative that Woods quickly realizes that his role in the offense is to drive and dish.

Woods will need to be the distributor on the second team. But when he is not distributing, he’ll have the ability to drive to the hoop, and finish. That will be the hallmark of Woods’ offense this year.

Look for Woods to be in the top three or four on the team in assists this season.


Woods’ strength is clear and obvious: His athleticism.

Since he was a freshman in high school, he has been a freakish athlete, and now his game has grown to match that athleticism.

Last year, Woods made a couple of incredible plays, including his best play of the year against NC State. 

But aside from being one of the best athletes on the court, Woods’ court vision is pretty strong. His stats per 40 minutes show that his assists would be right at six per game.

Having great court vision is a necessity in Roy Williams’ offense, especially for a point guard. Coach Williams loves to run in transition, and having the court vision of Woods can help boost those assists for a point guard.

Finally, Woods’ greatest strength in the scoring department is his ability to finish. Last year, Woods made some great moves in the paint, allowing him to finish at the tin.

Woods uses his athleticism to get to the rim, then uses his strength to finish, and even sometimes get fouled.

Tar Heels fans should be ecstatic to see more of a fully healthy Seventh Woods this year.

Bold Prediction

Because Woods will see a nice jump in his minutes, he will need to produce substantially more for the Heels.

I do not want to get too bold, but I believe that if Woods sees enough minutes this year he can be the second-best passer on the team.

I am going to go out on a limb and say that Woods will finish second on the team in assists per game, behind only Theo Pinson.

Related Story: Joel Berry named to preseason All-ACC first team

Everybody knows about Pinson’s ability to see the court, but at the end of the year, everybody will be talking about Woods’ court vision.