You can call this an epilogue of the Harrison Barnes-UNC-Duke waltz on October 5th.
Former Wake Forest/SCAR coach Dave Odom in the hours following the flurry of visits to the Barnes home made some interesting assertions about how it all went down. Odom, who is now associated with Buster Sports, spoke at length about the recruiting war over Barnes in a podcast posted the day following to two in-home visits with Harrison Barnes by Roy Williams and Mike Krzyzewki. Odom said that while he could not back up everything he was saying, he did know for certain that Krzyzewski asked to be the last in-home visit with Barnes which has slight advantages to it. Odom goes on to say that after Krzyzewski finished his visit, the Barnes family talked it over and decided to call Roy Williams to see if he could drop everything and fly halfway across the country at a moment's notice for a 2nd in-home visit. According to Odom that is what happened. First of all, Odom's account defies the laws of physics and violates basic common sense. Can Roy get on a private plane on short notice and be somewhere? I am sure he can. Could he do so in within the limited time frame most of the reliable accounts indicated? Not a chance. So in that respect Odom's account seemed fishy which was also confirmed by Inside Carolina who said the meeting had been scheduled in advanced.
After the dust had settled, Harrison Barnes caught wind of these rampant speculations and decided to set the record straight.
I would like to shed light on this process, since there is now speculation that Coach K’s request to my family was not upheld. I take my recruiting and the process in which I’ve established in selecting a school very serious, so when I hear a statement that is not factual and has no merit then it’s time to address it.
During the scheduling of my in-home visits at no point did Coach K say to my family and I that he wanted the “last” home visit, or did I say to him or his staff that I want you to have the “last” home visit. I have unofficially visited Coach K and Duke University on three occasions, so the “last” in-home visit was not going to make or break the relationship we’ve established.
Initially, coach Roy Williams, UNC, requested their in-home visit date with a return visit on October 5 since it was likely that I would have open gym that night. I notified UNC that we were not allowing additional in-home visits, so we agreed that they would have a contact on that date for approximately twenty minutes at my high school gym.
Coach Mike Krzyzewski requested the first in-home visit date, which we both agreed. As we were confirming the visit they also wanted an additional date, which was October 5. Once we started to go through the schedule it made more sense for us to have Duke conduct their in-home closer to their official visit date than to come in on September 9, their original request. Coach K wanted to see me on the first day of the contact period so we had a contact at my high school on that day.
During the contact period, September 9 - October 5, 2009, Duke used all three of their contact visits, while UNC used two contacts and one evaluation visit.
I didn’t have school on Monday, October 5; therefore open gym was Tuesday night, October 6. I could have easily met UNC at Ames High for a brief meeting, but since I had a few additional questions for Coach Williams I invited them back into my home. End of story.
Let me say, Barnes is very mature and his handling of this shows a great deal of savvy. If he ends up at Duke, I will have a difficult time hating him because he handles himself so well.
To sum up Barnes said there was no pecking order on visits and Duke did not specifically request the last visit with Barnes. I am sure they were extremely happy to get the last visit and it worked out well for them but according to Barnes it was not a specific request. Secondary to that Roy Williams apparently decided to play a little chess by working out a final contact on October 5th. Barnes points out that UNC had a contact in the bag and Roy wisely used it. It just so happened Barnes opted to simply have Roy come to the house instead of meet at Ames High School. I think we can call that a break for Roy since I am sure talking to Barnes and his family in their home is a better deal than talking to Barnes for 20 minutes at the gym.
In the end, this information does not change what we already knew but I do like the behind the scenes workings as well as a glimpse at how the process works.
P.S.: Is it me or does Buster Sports end up being wrong fairly often? Couple this with their assertion that Tyler Hansbrough was still injured and there might be a pattern developing.