UNC basketball’s looming dominance is highlighted by returning talent

A slew of returning talent could mean UNC basketball is in for a dominant season.

One of the big shocks of the 2022 NCAA tournament was North Carolina’s run to the national championship game. UNC flirted with the bubble for most of the year before things heated up in March and blew a second-half lead before falling to the Kansas Jayhawks with a title at stake.

It was unclear whether this loss would affect the Tar Heels’ ability to retain talent, a big reason why it was difficult to predict whether or not that would be the case a top 10 team going into the 2022-23 season. The offseason has gone very well for UNC, however, and Hubert Davis’ team is poised to potentially roll over college basketball starting in November.

UNC basketball brings back a lot of stars

Now that the NBA draft withdrawal deadline has passed and the transfer portal movement is all but complete, most college basketball rosters are in place. The Field of 68 recently ranked their top 25 returning players for the next season and the Tar Heels placed third on the list, led by big man Armando Bacot at number 3.

The other UNC players who made it were RJ Davis and Caleb Love, which is good since they were three of North Carolina’s top players during the NCAA tournament. The only notable loss for the Tar Heels is forward Brady Manek, who exhausted his playing eligibility after the tournament, but Davis has two top recruits joining the program in guard Seth Trimble and center Jalen Washington.

That kind of talent could make North Carolina the top team in preseason polls, a spot Gonzaga has owned for the past two years. The Bulldogs remain a threat for this mantle, as do Arkansas and Houston after strong offseasons, but the road to a championship could lead through Chapel Hill this season.

Nothing is a guarantee, however, as many felt UCLA would be a Final Four contender after its big NCAA tournament run in the Indianapolis bubble in 2021. The Bruins underperformed last season and were thrown back into the Sweet 16, providing a cautionary tale Davis will preach to his team, who go into the campaign with sky-high expectations.

https://fansided.com/2022/06/13/unc-basketball-dominance-returning-talent/ UNC basketball’s looming dominance is highlighted by returning talent

John Verrall

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