ESPN.com has released a list compiled by their panel of college basketball experts called the Impact 25. This is a list of 25 individuals who will have basically be major storylines throughout the season. From a UNC perspective two players were listed. The most obvious being Tyler Hansbrough who was found on list of nine returnees who would be impact players.
Why he'll make news: Hansbrough had a monster freshman season. He arguably was one of the five best players in the country on a consistent basis. He comes back for his sophomore season as a legit candidate to be national player of the year. Hansbrough's work ethic, not just every game, but on every possession, is lauded by opposing coaches. He will make news because he's going to score, and lead the Tar Heels' combination of veteran sophomores and high-profile newcomers to the NCAA Tournament, and likely the ACC title. He's not a flashy player, but he will show emotion. He's not too talkative, but he doesn't hide when the cameras come, either.
Honestly there is nothing that can said of Hansbrough that has not been said already. In fact I should just stop linking this stuff altogether because by this point we all know he is hard working, strong, and possibly unstoppable. And I am excited he will be anchoring this very talented Tar Heel team, it should be fun.
The other player included in the Impact 25 is on the newcomer list and that is Tywon Lawson.
How he will make an impact: By blending this group, ensuring there are no issues with the returnees and his fellow newcomers, and by pushing the ball up court the way Roy Williams loves on his team's heralded break. Lawson, teamed up with Wayne Ellington, gives the Tar Heels a loaded perimeter with the already-established Bobby Frasor, Wes Miller and wings Danny Green and Marcus Ginyard.
First of all, I love how everyone has Lawson penciled in as the starting point guard. Not that I do not think it will eventually be the case but it is not necessarily a foregone conclusion at least to begin the season. Bobby Frasor is the incumbent point man and junior Quentin Thomas has improved quite a bit to the point he will earn some time running the offense. The point is that Lawson will have to earn his stripes and beat both Frasor and Thomas for the job. Like everyone else I see no reason to believe it will not happen, I just think it will take a few games to work it out. I was actually more intrigued by the first line in the paragraph above:
By blending this group, ensuring there are no issues with the returnees and his fellow newcomers...
What does that mean? Is he going to be Dr. Phil and manage the team chemistry? That sounds like something, say, the uperclassmen leaders would do not a freshman point guard. It justs makes no sense to me that they are tagging Lawson as the player who will be somehow unifying the team and ensuring there are no problems between the freshmen and the older players. I can easily see him being a key component in making the offense go at a frenetic pace and distributing the basketball in such a way as to utilize all the weapons on the floor but being the arbiter of issues and the manager of team unity seems like a stretch.
Of course it is still far more researched and in-depth than anything CBS Sportsline has going on.