We had heard this might be true. But now it’s official. Harrison Barnes, the ACC Rookie of the Year, will be coming back to Chapel Hill for another season, giving up a shot at the NBA to pursue a national championship and to continue to mature and improve his game at North Carolina.
The 6-8 Barnes told the basketball world in a statement that:
“As an 18-year old, I’m in the early stages of my life journey,” Barnes says. “I’m honored and blessed for the chance to play in the NBA. And because of my family, teachers, passion, and work, I have the ultimate dream of one day playing and experiencing a fulfilling career in the NBA.
“Opportunities, both beneficial and life changing, can seem to make the next phase of my journey an easy decision. But I am a student-athlete at the University of North Carolina. I’m here to experience college life, grow as a person, receive a quality education, and be part of the greatest basketball family in college sports.”
He was expected to be a high Lottery pick, and was probably going to be one of the top five players selected after averaging nearly 16 points a game for UNC. Barnes had improved greatly as the year went along, his game and mentality maturing to the point that he might’ve been the team’s best player during the last few weeks of the season.
But with his return, the 2011 Draft takes another hit. Once you get past Kyrie Irving and Derrick Williams, the talent drops off significantly. This one is shaping up to be possibly the worst draft class in the last decade. Still, take a look at the 2012 Draft. That’ll more than make up for it.
On the other hand, North Carolina is loaded next year…
Do you think Barnes made the right choice?
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