This past Wednesday, 2018 UNC commit Coby White opened up about the past couple months in his first entry for the USA Today High School Sports log, entitled “For My Father.” Coby lost his father Donald White to cancer on August 15 after being told in June that he was incurable. It has undoubtedly been a difficult summer for him, but he did not shy away from discussing it in his first blog post.
“This summer was hard going through everything with my dad and every time I stepped onto the court I couldn’t help but to think about him and everything he was battling with cancer. But he would always try to get out to my tournaments. He loved to watch me play!”
What has been impressive after finding out about his father’s condition in February is how White has managed to handle himself. Knowing that he may lose yet another family member to cancer—he also lost an aunt and two uncles to it—White continued to not only dominate on the high school level, but actually improve. Coby won Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of North Carolina after averaging 31.2 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 6.1 assists per game.
In his post, Coby White also opened up about Roy Williams and his coaching staff’s support during this rough time. Williams was in attendance for his father’s funeral, something that White spoke fondly of as well as assistant coach Steve Robinson’s regular calls over the last few weeks. After sharing words about his experiences with the coaching staff, he stated how good it felt that he will be in a family environment once he arrives on campus next year.
Coby White went on to talk about last week’s in-home visit with Roy Williams. Williams brought in his ring collection, including his newly-acquired 2017 national championship ring that he received a couple weeks ago in Kenan Stadium. They discussed how White will be utilized when he arrives on campus, and it sounds like he will indeed play as a true combo guard for UNC. This isn’t incredibly surprising, as the backcourt for the 2018-19 season will be one of the deepest that UNC has had in the past.
Finally, Coby laid out all of his goals for the rest of his high school career both on and off the court. His goal off the court is to graduate with a 3.6 GPA, and made it clear that the academic side for him is very important. On the court, his goals are just as high: he wants to be the all-time leading scorer in North Carolina history. As the number one player in the state and one of the top scorers in the country, it’s fair to say that this goal is far from impossible.
Since committing to UNC last July, Coby White’s name has become more and more prevalent in the high school ranks. You get the feeling that his drive only gets stronger and stronger by the day, and one can only imagine what he is going to achieve during his senior year before arriving in Chapel Hill. What we do know is that Coby White embodies everything that UNC basketball has become over the past few years, and it will be really exciting to see what impact he makes when he finally arrives on campus.