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2019-20 North Carolina men's basketball preview

North Carolina Tar Heels

2018-19 record: 29-7, 16-2 in the ACC

Head coach: Roy Williams

Tenure at North Carolina: 17th season

Career coaching record: 871-234

Home court: Dean E. Smith Center

Starters: G Cole Anthony, G Brandon Robinson, G Leaky Black, F Garrison Brooks, F Armando Bacot

Bench: G Christian Keeling, F Justin Pierce, F Brandon Huffman

Overview: North Carolina had a solid season last year, although the Tar Heels did not go deep in the postseason, losing to Auburn in the Sweet Sixteen. North Carolina enters this season with a lot of key losses, with three first-round picks in June's NBA Draft: Coby White, Cameron Johnson, and Nassir Little. The Tar Heels also lost some older players like Luke Maye and Kenny Williams, who served key roles as veterans. 

However, Roy Williams has some new stars to show off. Freshman Cole Anthony, the MVP of the McDonald’s All-American Game, will be a player to rely on this season. Armando Bacot will try to take Luke Maye’s place as the strong rebounder on the squad. Williams also welcomes a couple of transfers, Christian Keeling and Justin Pierce, to the fold.

Besides the new players, there are some returning Tar Heels that will have bigger roles on the team this year as well. Senior Brandon Robinson opened some eyes last season, as he averaged 46.0 percent from beyond the arc and had a 2.9-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio. Junior forward Garrison Brooks is the only returner that is used to the spotlight; he will have to step up and use his past experience to guide his teammates. 

One thing that needs to go right: Anthony lives up to his reputation and runs the point the majority of the time.

One thing that could go wrong: The starters struggle adjusting to the ACC's pace of play and lack the experience to have a strong team dynamic.


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