The recruiting process this spring for the 2019 class feels like it has gone on forever, especially for the North Carolina Tar Heels. After Cole Anthony announced his commitment a couple of months ago, things went in such an upward trajectory for Roy Williams and his staff so quickly that everything that followed has been slow and drawn out. This couldn’t be any less true when looking at the mission set out to find a true small forward to complete the roster, and they just struck out on their last available option.
This afternoon four-star prospect Jalen Wilson announced that he will attend the University of Kansas this fall. His decision arrived after de-committing from the Michigan Wolverines after their former head coach John Beilein accepted a job in the NBA to coach the Cleveland Cavaliers, and re-opening his recruitment to the Jayhawks, the Tar Heels, and the Wolverines once Juwad Howard accepted the vacant position. It was very likely that Wilson would take his talents to Lawrence given the rapport he was able to develop with Bill Self and his staff prior to his first announcement, which likely made it a tough situation for Roy Williams to gain any traction.
With Wilson’s commitment, Roy Williams’ recruiting board is completely clear for the 2019 recruiting class. When looking at the small forward position, the likely candidates for the starting job are Leaky Black, Brandon Robinson, and grad transfer Justin Pierce. Last month, I selected Robinson as the projected starter for the Tar Heels with the concession that Black could very well win the job over him. With Wilson no longer being a potential option, it looks more and more likely like that will be the case for the first game against Notre Dame.
Looking ahead on the recruiting side of things, Roy Williams and his staff can now give more attention to their 2020 recruiting class, and hopefully land some commitments from their stout list of current offers. As of right now, the only commitment that they have received is from 247 Sports/Rivals four-star Day’Ron Sharpe, so it’ll be interesting to see who they can place around him, how many scholarships will be available to work with, and if they will be able to continue their momentum with landing top-tier talent now that the negative recruitment issues are long gone.
For right now, we can safely say that the 2019-20 North Carolina Tar Heels roster is now confirmed. Now it’s time for the hard part: waiting for college basketball to return.