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UNC vs Pitt - Player of the Game: Kennedy Meeks

Despite playing co-star to Justin Jackson, Meeks was able to shine on Saturday.

NCAA Basketball: North Carolina at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

I am 1000% committed to the Justin Jackson for ACC Player of the Year movement. Every game lately has become an ode to the progress Jackson has made in his time at Carolina, and he will undoubtedly be the man to carry the team on his back throughout March and hopefully April.

It’s hard for any of Jackson’s teammates to end up as Player of the Game recently, but it would be an error to overlook the contributions of Kennedy Meeks in Pittsburgh on Saturday. Jackson lit up the score sheet with his three-pointers, but Meeks’ double-double was important in its own right.

Meeks finished the game with 18 points and 10 rebounds in 25 minutes of play. He also added one assist, two steals, and committed zero turnovers. That last part is especially important. While his big man counterpart, Isaiah Hicks, has struggled the last few games, Meeks has become an important cog in the UNC machine.

It’s probably safe to say at this point that Meeks’ play this year hasn’t gotten the appreciation it may deserve. Some of that may stem from memories of early issues, but he has been pretty solid at important times this season for the Tar Heels. A tough game on the road against a team better than their record suggests was another such time.