UNC Basketball: 5 things we learned from the Tar Heels’ win over Wofford

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 07: Luke Maye
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 07: Luke Maye /
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NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 09: Garrison Brooks
NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 09: Garrison Brooks /

2. Garrison Brooks has the chops to be the next prolific UNC big man

If you watched Garrison Brooks play on Tuesday night and think he looked a lot like former UNC big man Brice Johnson, you’re right. The only difference? Brooks might be farther along than Johnson was just a game into his sophomore season. That’s cause for concern over the next few years for the rest of the ACC.

At no point during the Tar Heels’ bout with Wofford did Brooks look like a sophomore who battled for playing time last season with several other bigs. He did, though. In fact, he shared minutes with a handful of other front court players, and was often overshadowed by fellow sophomore forward Sterling Manley.

That wasn’t the case on Tuesday when Brooks played 25 minutes to Manley’s eight, and scored 20 points on 9-of-15 shooting, and 2-of-3 from the foul line. He also played under control, turning the ball over twice — tied for fewest among UNC starters — and committing just one foul.

Related Story. Garrison Brooks 2018-19 player preview. light

Brooks looked like a seasoned veteran in the first game of the season. Only time will tell, though, if it’s an aberration, or the new normal. Suffice it to say that other North Carolina bigs will find it difficult to earn playing time if the former four-star Mississippi State pledge turned UNC commit continues to play the way he did against the Terriers.