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Heel Tough Blog: Fifth Tar Heel Enters the Transfer Portal - @willshaver6

After finding out earlier this week that Armando Bacot, R.J. Davis, and Jalen Washington will return to Carolina for the 2023-24 season, a fifth player has entered the transfer portal, as reserve big man Will Shaver will transfer out of the Carolina program. Shaver was the first ever high school recruit to commit to Hubert Davis after he became the UNC head coach, and upon that commitment, decided to enroll early, and redshirt during the 2021-22 season. That meant, Shaver was on the bench for Carolina during their run to the national championship game and was getting familiar with the program in practice. Last summer, Hubert Davis met with the media and said that they would never allow a player to enroll early, as a redshirt, claiming that it wasn't a good fit for either party. Maybe we should’ve known then, that an exit from the program for Shaver was in the cards.

Shaver was a three-star recruit from Alabama but had the feel of a four-year player, that would do all the dirty work on the inside, on both ends of the floor. This year, he played in only 3 games, as he found it hard to earn minutes behind Armando Bacot, and Pete Nance. Unfortunately, a foot injury caused him to miss the rest of the 2022-23 season. Furthermore, seeing Jalen Washington show his potential on both ends of the floor, played a role in this decision, as Washington will most likely come off the bench next season, if Hubert Davis fills out the roster the way he wants, and honestly needs to.

Seeing as Shaver only played in three games at Carolina, on paper, this isn’t a big loss, but this does throw another wrench in the roster build for next season. Carolina has seen its entire wing position group leave the program, via either graduation or the transfer portal. With Caleb Love also expected to exit the program one way or another, this just adds another position group, the Tar Heels need to address this off-season.

As of right now, Carolina has Armando Bacot, and Jalen Washington as the only frontcourt players on the roster for next season. Four-star freshman, Zayden High will enroll, giving Carolina three bigs for next season, which just isn’t enough to navigate a long season, especially if Washington ends up starting. Seeing as the only other addition to this year's recruiting class would come in the form of players reclassifying, UNC will need to address the frontcourt in the transfer portal, just like the backcourt, and the wings, furthering the roster overhaul the program is undergoing this spring.

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