March 29, 2012 Leave a comment
North Carolina players, Forward Harrison Barnes (Sophomore), Forward John Henson (Junior), and Guard Kendall Marshall (Sophomore) announced today that they plan to leave school early and join the NBA.
The Tar Heels season ended Sunday when they lost to the number two seeded Kansas Jayhawks, 80-67.
The three players were all in the top five in scoring on the Tar Heels this season. Barnes averaged 17.1 ppg, 5.2 reb, and 1.1 ast. As for Henson he averaged 13.7 ppg, 9.9 reb, and 1.3 ast. As for Marshall he averaged 8.1 ppg, 2.6 reb, and 9.8 ast.
According to NBADraft.net, Barnes is projected to be selected 5th overall. As for Marshall, he’s projected to be selected 13th overall. And as for Henson, he is projected to be selected 16th overall.
As for other former North Carolina player, Tyler Zeller who was a senior this year is projected to be selected 17th.
Head Coach, Roy Williams’ reaction: “It’s a great day for three youngsters who are taking another step toward their ultimate goal of playing professional basketball,” says head coach Roy Williams. “On a very small stage, it’s a sad day for me because I won’t get to coach them again. All Tar Heel fans will miss them greatly, as well.”
Henson’s reaction: “I’ve loved my three years at Carolina, and now I’m ready to pursue my dream of playing in the NBA,” says Henson. “It’s tough to leave because I love my teammates, coaches and UNC. I wish we’d been able to bring our fans a national championship, but it wasn’t meant to be. I am proud of what we accomplished, especially the last two years.”
Henson would continue…
“I plan to finish working toward my degree. That’s important to my parents, CoachWilliams and me. I can’t say enough about how much I’ve enjoyed my experience in Chapel Hill. This was a big decision and it will be a big change, but I’m ready,” said Henson.
“I’d like to thank my parents, Coach Williams and his staff and all of my teammates for everything they’ve done to get me ready for this moment. I’d also like to thank all the Carolina fans who have given us so much support over the lastthree years,” said Henson
“I’m honored and blessed to have the opportunity to compete in the NBA,” says Barnes. “The love and respect I have for basketball fuel the drive toward my ultimate goal – to experience an illustrious career in the NBA. I have consulted with Coach Williams and my family, and although it was a difficult decision, I have decided to enter this year’s NBA draft.”
Barnes would continue saying…
“Chapel Hill is a special place. Over the past two years I’ve enjoyed every single moment of my Tar Heel experience. The road we took to reach the Elite 8 in 2011 and again in 2012 were great team accomplishments. I am thankful to UNC fans, my teammates, and to have played for Hall of Fame Coach Roy Williams and the entire coaching staff. Now it’s time for the next course of my journey. Although I may be giving up my eligibility, I will continue to pursue my degree. I love this university and will always be a Tar Heel,” said Barnes.
Marshall’s reaction: “I would like to thank my family, coaches, teammates and the Tar Heel Nation for all their support,” says Marshall. “It’s been the greatest two years of my life. I have always put the team before myself and I am extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished. My life long dream has been to play basketball at the highestlevel possible and I feel now is my greatest opportunity to fulfill this goal. I will always be a Tar Heel at heart and I will carry the experiences that I’ve had here both on and off the court with me for the rest of my life.”
Quotes from North Carolina’s athletic page.