Despite the NCAA delaying the start of practice, and the season last week, the 2020-21 college basketball season is right around the corner. Another sign of that being true is that yesterday Carolina released their roster for the upcoming season. Even though the team went 14-19 last season, expectations are high entering this year. The main reason for the optimism is the return of Garrison Brooks, who averaged 16.8 points and 8.5 rebounds in a breakout junior campaign. Leaky Black and Armando Bacot who both started in that dismal 2019-20 season, are also back, as both are looking to take a step forward.
A good sign for Roy Williams squad is the return of big man Sterling Manley, who missed all of last season recovering from a knee injury. Anthony Harris is listed as a redshirt freshman as his season was cut short but an ACL injury a year ago.
In addition to the starters returning, Carolina has Andrew Platek, K.J. Smith, Walker Miller & Ryan McAdoo returning as bench players. Platek got time in the starting lineup due to injuries, but is looking to be more consistent in his final season in Chapel Hill.
The main reason for the excitement and expectations around the Tar Heels, is the incoming freshman class. Roy Williams brought in his highest rated recruiting class in over a decade, and arguably his deepest class ever. Caleb Love headlines the newcomers as a 5 stat point guard from Missouri, and he appears to be the perfect fit to run the Carolina offense. Not only did Williams bring in a 5 star point guard, he’s also bringing in highly skilled big men in Walker Kessler and Day’Ron Sharpe. The depth is the best part of the class as Donovan “Puff” Johnson, Kerwin Walton and R.J. Davis rounds out the scholarship players, and all are 4 star guys that can contribute right away. The last player that’ll be a new face on the bench is Creighton Lebo, the son of former Tar Heel player Jeff Lebo.
Carolina will be able to officially practice starting October 14th, with games starting no sooner than November 25th. As of right now the only schedule announcements are that the ACC is committed to competing in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge, and that the Maui Invitational has been moved to Asheville, NC.