It’s official, at 4:18, Friday the 13th…Harrison Barnes is a member of the North Carolina Tar Heels.
First, I can’t curse Barnes. He’s a good kid. He’s going to be a great player.
Second, congratulations to Carolina…what else can be said right now?
If it wasn’t clear after their second title in four years that UNC is the premier team right now on Tobacco Road, then it became clear the moment Barnes Skyp’d Coach Roy. I really thought we had him. I really did.
Right now, Roy is our daddy. If someone wants to ask me who my daddy is, it’s Roy Williams. He’s out-coaching us, his teams are out-playing us and it has become clear he has out-recruited us. To me, that’s what is most devastating about this Barnes situation.
Coach K had been after Barnes for nearly two years. He had been on campus a half-a-dozen times, often decked out in Duke gear. We just brought in a top point guard. It didn’t matter. Right now, what Roy wants, Roy gets.
The Tar Heels swept in late, real late. In fact, they were the last school to offer Barnes a scholarship. It didn’t matter. Right now, what Roy wants, Roy gets.
Maybe one day we’ll figure out what the turning point was. Obviously some things are clear. Carolina is the best team in the nation. They have the best coach. They have a fan base that stretches from coast to coast…oh and they have Jordan.
Don’t underestimate that. Michael Jordan is the top sales pitch to any kid who heads to Chapel Hill. This generation of kids who are headed to college right now, idolized Jordan. He is the NBA, whether he’s playing anymore or not.
Unfortunately, Duke and Coach K do not have time to soul search. They still have scholarships that need to be filled in 2010. Right now, top on Duke’s list has to be Roscoe Smith. Currently, Connecticut and Georgetown are the favorites.
This coaching staff does need to figure out what’s wrong. Year after year, Duke just keeps whiffing on their top target. It has happened so much it’s starting to become a tradition.