Bilas: No one out-works Roy on the recruiting trail
Posted November 17, 2009
Updated November 18, 2009
One of the hottest topics in sports this week is the decision of an Iowa teenager to attend the University of North Carolina. Rated the best basketball prospect in the nation, Harrison Barnes chose to play for coach Roy Williams and the Tar Heels.
What seems to be stirring up the most opinions in the heart of ACC hoops country is not the fact that Barnes chose UNC, but that Barnes chose Roy over K.
Did Mike Krzyzewski 'lose' the Barnes battle to Williams? Has Coach K lost his ability to land the elite recruits?
ESPN's Jay Bilas won't go as far as to say Krzyzewski is losing his edge in recruiting, but he does believe that no one is better than Williams in the recruiting battle.
"I think one of the things that makes Roy Williams – in my judgment, the best recruiter out there period – is, nobody can recruit to a place that isn't a great school..." Bilas told 99.9 FM The Fan ESPN Radio.
Of course coaching at one of the best programs in the history of college basketball helps Williams' situation. But, what is it that puts Ol' Roy over the top?
"I think what makes Roy Williams an unbelievable recruiter is, he works at it," Bilas says. "He's an unbelievably hard worker. He's in the gym all the time, and he takes recruiting personally."
Bilas, however, qualifies his opinions on Williams with a defense of Krzyzewski.
"Coach K does too. I don't know that I could say I see him absolutely as much in every gym that I see Roy Williams ... My sense is that it's an incredible personal endeavor for Roy. And I know it is for Coach K too."
Regarding the pageantry surrounding the Barnes decision, Bilas didn't have a problem with the grand presentation of his letter of intent. But, the former Duke big man says it would be nice if Barnes and other recruits didn't string along the coaches who have worked so hard to get a commitment.
"I think common courtesy dictates that you pick up the phone and say, 'Hey, listen. Thanks for recruiting me, but I'm going to Carolina, or I'm going to wherever you go.' Let them know," Bilas told The Insiders.
"So that they're not watching with their rosary beads, and all that, and their rabbit's feet, and hoping it's them."