Even though his draft stock has dramatically fallen it was pretty surprising to hear that James Michael McAdoo would be returning to the North Carolina Tar Heels. Considering every year that a player comes back is more time for NBA scouts to find flaws in a guy’s game, it is nearly inconceivable to think that McAdoo will end up projecting any higher in next year’s draft than in this one’s.
Still, the athletic big has decided that attending UNC for his junior year is what is best for him — who are we to argue? Now that he has made his decision, the time to focus on his draft stock is over and it is currently all about how much it will benefit Roy Williams.
Obviously, keeping a talent such as McAdoo is a tremendous boost to Williams’ squad for next season. In fact, North Carolina has a tremendous team (on paper) that will be trotting out on the court next season. With P.J. Hairston also coming back, coupled with another good recruiting class, the Tar Heels will once again be one of the front-runners to win the conference.
A lot of the team’s success is going to pend on how much McAdoo improves during the offseason. There is a reason his draft stock fell after all. Experts assumed that McAdoo would advance past just being a genetic freak and become a better, overall player. While he was not bad or anything, he did not exactly show tremendous signs of improving his game.
Regardless of what you feel about his NBA potential, McAdoo should be a much more impacting college player next season. Even if it is through the maturity of his body alone — adding strength to his game — not many foes are going to be able to match up with him on a physical level — leaving the Tar Heels with a huge advantage.
McAdoo is going to have a slew of reasons to improve in the offseason. Some of them are for personal goals (NBA stock), while others are going to be to help the team. Not matter what, I can’t imagine the UNC fanbase has anything but a smile stretching from ear to ear with the news that McAdoo will be giving it a go — at least for one more year.
Joe is a Senior Writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @JosephNardone