College Basketball

Top prospect Barnes picks North Carolina

Posted November 13, 2009

The wins just keep on coming for North Carolina.

The defending national champions scored a major coup off the court Friday when high school senior Harrison Barnes announced he will play for the Tar Heels.

Barnes, ranked the No. 1 prospect in the country by recruiting site, made the announcement at the gymnasium at Ames High School in Iowa. Barnes is a 6-foot-6, 190-pound forward and a strong student.

His final six schools were Duke, Carolina, UCLA, Kansas, Iowa State and Oklahoma.

Barnes had been coveted by Duke, and the two long-time rivals locked in a fierce struggle for his services. Carolina got a huge boost when Barnes attended its dazzling alumni game in September. Watching Michael Jordan and other Tar Heel greats return to Chapel Hill made an impression, as did a last-second effort by Coach Roy Williams, who swooped in to visit Barnes on the same night as Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski.

Barnes will join a UNC recruiting class that already includes 6-6 shooting guard Reggie Bullock of Kinston and 6-3 point guard Kendall Marshall of Arlington, Va. Both are rated five-star recruits by

Bullock is rated the No. 11 player in the country and Marshall is No. 21, according to the rankings.

Barnes made his announcement in dramatic fashion, going to the podium as the crowd waited and saying he would call the coach he was choosing. He used the Skype technology to make a video call, and as the crowd waited, Barnes said, "Coach Roy Williams?"

"Coach Roy Williams?" Barnes asked, as Williams, surrounded by his North Carolina team, appeared on the video screen.

 "Can you hear us? We've got the whole team here," Williams said.

"I can see that," Barnes said "Coach, I know that you're in practice right now and I need to go sign my letter of intent but I just wanted to let you know that I'll be joining you guys on the squad and I can't wait to play with you guys."

"All right!" Williams said.

Barnes said he wanted to do the announcement in an unusual way.

"We wanted to do something big because we thought this would be special," Barnes said.

Barnes' decision was a tight secret, with few leaks about where he would go. Barnes said he called all the coaches Thursday night to thank them for recruiting him but did not tell them where he was going.




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  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 18, 2009

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    I'm just saying, NC State gets no respect. Young kids probably choose Duke or Carolina back when they have a choice. Of course there are old-timers that have been around long enough to remember State in the 80's when we weren't so bad. But it's been 20 years since those good ole days. Why would a kid today choose to be a State fan, when his Duke and Carolina fan-friends will continually mock him for it with every State loss?

    Are you sure those family members PREFER a Carolina loss to a State win? Or do they just love both almost equally, so that it just seems that way?

  • heelsfaninraleigh Nov 17, 2009

    Let me introduce you to my sister-in-law as well as my niece and nephews whom she is raising to be the same way - as her mother did her. I kid you not.

    As far as why would anyone 'chose' to be a State fan, what kind of fan would say that??? It is only in recent years that State hasn't done well athletically. Unless you are very young, you've lived through good years. As one who has been a Carolina fan since 1st grade, I've lived thru bad years, but never waivered in my support. Not thru the early Mack years, Torbush/Bunting or the Doherty years.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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    Any fan that would rather see another school lose than their own school win is probably the least deserving of any respect. So I would answer your question with "the Carolina fan". And there's nothing wrong with being a Carolina fan despite not going there. It's the bigmouths with such an attitude, that Carolina is the best thing since sliced bread, and they didn't go there. They're the most annoying fans of all probably. (There are surely some State fans like that, too. But I doubt there are as many. Why would anyone CHOOSE to pull for State when they are so bad at pretty much everything? I'm sure some do, though. They just don't get as many opportunities to run their mouths.)

    I don't think any State fans really prefer a Carolina loss to a State win, though. Who does that?

  • heelsfaninraleigh Nov 17, 2009

    ^^Your response to my post didn't address it at all. I ask you which fan is better? The one who graduated from State, but would rather see Carolina lose than State win? Or the Carolina fan who didn't go to school there??

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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    I'm not bitter. I just have no respect for the big mouths that CHOOSE a winner to pull for. The same is pretty much true for the NY Yankees, Dallas Cowboys, etc. People like that didn't earn anything. It's EASY to choose Carolina when you're free to make a choice. How hard is it to pull for a team that only loses 4-5 basketball games in a lot of years. More power to them. I respect that, and I'm happy for the true fans. It's the idiot big mouths that I have no respect for.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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    I tried to explain that I don't feel like this about many Carolina fans. Like I said, the people I know that actually WENT to school there are not like this. Most of them are pretty classy people.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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    Then you're not one of the fans I'm talking about. I'm talking about some of the biggest mouthed fans you will ever see.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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    You can rest assured that those fans didn't CHOOSE to pull for NC State because they win a lot. They love the university, for whatever reason.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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    I am a graduate of NC State. I only played intramural sports. I don't know anyone that works at Wal*Mart. I don't have a problem with Wal*Mart. I think they provide a lot of jobs.

    I only have a problem with the Wal*Mart FANS. (Not Wal*Mart employees... I'm talking about the Wal*Mart SHOPPERS. The idiots that buy all their Carolina garb at Wal*Mart, and are the biggest mouths for Carolina. The people that HAVE to pull for a winner, and chose Carolina. If Carolina was not a winner, they'd have chosen something else. It's not "their" team that wins championships. Carolina is their team BECAUSE they win championships. They have the luxury of CHOOSING a team that wins. If my alma mater ever wins a national championship, I can be proud of my alma mater for pulling that off. How can anyone really be proud of a team they CHOSE for winning, when winning is THE REASON they chose to pull for them in the first place?

    I'm not talking about everybody. I'm talking about the idiots that actually feel like they have accomplished something when Carolina wins a game.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Nov 17, 2009

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