According to his Twitter page Keeshawn Silver announced his intentions to walk on to the basketball team upon his enrollment at North Carolina. Silver is a big part of the loaded 2021 recruiting class Mack Brown is currently putting together on the football side of things. Silver attends Rocky Mount High School, where last year he averaged 10.9 points and 8.3 rebounds for the Gryphons.
This decision is interesting for a lot of different reasons, first off Silver will become the first player since Kanler Coker to play both football and basketball in Chapel Hill. With Silver being a defensive end, the comparisons to former Tar Heel and NFL All-Pro Julius Peppers will be endless. Peppers averaged 5.7 points and 3.7 rebounds in his two seasons on the hardwood.
Silver would also become the second football player, a part of the loaded 2021 class, that plans to play for both Mack Brown and Roy Williams. 4 star quarterback prospect Drake Maye has also made it known, he plans to play basketball upon arriving on campus. Maye averaged 16.1 points and 11.3 rebounds for Myers Park a season ago.
With Silver being a walk-on that means that playing time would be earned and not given. At 6-4, 270 pounds, Silver would need to drop weight to play on the perimeter, and would be an undersized power forward in the ACC. While it’s way too early to project what the makeup of the 2021-22 basketball roster will look like, Armando Bacot, Sterling Manley, Walker Kessler and Day’Ron Sharpe could all be on the roster for that season, making it that much more difficult for Silver to have a role for Roy Williams.
Nonetheless this is a great opportunity for Silver to be coached by two Hall of Fame coaches in their respective sports. Also by playing basketball, it’ll make Silver that much more athletic, and will make him a more versatile defensive player for Jay Bateman to utilize.