The University of North Carolina’s recruiting “woes” have been no secret to the hardcore fan or the national media, but the buzz around the 2018 and 2019 UNC classes have seemed to garner more excitement than season’s past. Roy has been hot on the recruiting trail for the upcoming classes, and it’s beginning to show. Scout.com has released their latest 2019 basketball recruiting rankings, and many potential Tar Heel targets have moved up. Let’s take a look at where the offered recruits have landed so far.
Starting with UNC’s first 2019 commit Jeremiah Francis, the guard from Pickerington, Ohio jumped 18 spots from 64 to 46, coming ever closer to the coveted 5th star. With a big senior year, he could make the jump. Other recruits on the list have yet to announce their commitment.
James Wiseman has been made the no. 1 prospect on the list for 2019. The Memphis, Tennessee power forward has the blue blood offers to back it up with Kentucky, Kansas, Indiana and Louisville in the running. Vernon Carey Jr., the player he replaced, dropped to no. 2 overall and also holds a UNC offer. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because his father was a football player at the University of Miami and a first rounder. Carey Jr. is viewed as a lock for Miami, but the Heels will certainly keep in contact.
Matthew Hurt and Ashton Haggins are at no. 4 and no. 5 on the list. Hurt is a power forward from Minnesota, while Haggins is a point guard from Georgia. Both have big time offers, and it will be a battle for Roy and company to get them to enroll (as are all top 5 recruits these days).
Armando Bacot is power forward/center from Virginia, and he finds himself down from 16 to 21. Another skilled big man in the 2019 class would certainly help fill the hole Luke Maye will leave by then, but as of now many of the predictions are to a royal blue school near Chapel Hill.
Wendell Moore and Josh Nickelberry are no. 22 and no. 24 on the list from Scout.com and have been connected with the Heels for a few years now. Wendell Moore is a small forward that currently has 5 of 6 247sports.com predictions to Chapel Hill. Josh Nickelberry is a shooting guard from North Carolina, but made the move to Oak Hill Academy for his final two high school seasons. Of all five predictions on 247sports.com, all five are for the Carolina blue.
With the downturn in recruiting in the last three or four years, it looks like 2018 and 2019 will have a chance to get UNC back to the top tier of recruiting. Obviously it hasn’t hurt the Heels on the court, but more talent certainly would keep the buzz around North Carolina rolling.