Following an outstanding freshman season, North Carolina lead guard Coby White declared for the 2019 NBA Draft on Wednesday.
The 6-foot-5 White was a key reason for the Tar Heels making a Sweet 16 run this season as he adjusted from playing more off the ball in high school to playing on the ball at North Carolina. Putting up 16.1 points, 4.1 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game on the season, White showed flashes of greatness while running the Tar Heels’ fast-paced offense.
Shooting 42 percent from the field and 35 percent from three-point range, White could play on or off the ball at the next level as some consider him to be a potential top-10 pick. A former McDonald’s All-American, White’s departure is expected for North Carolina as they’ll need to find a suitable lead guard starter for next season.
Junior guard Seventh Woods is expected to return and the Tar Heels continue to be in the mix for five-star point guard Cole Anthony as replacing White will be a key offseason storyline.
North Carolina freshman guard Coby White is expected to miss Wednesday’s game against UNC-Wilmington. Head coach Roy Williams said on his radio show on Monday night that the 6-foot-5 White has been dealing with an ankle injury that has held him out of practice.
“Coby’s ankle is bothering him a little bit so we’re holding him out,” Williams said. “Hasn’t practiced.”
White is No. 12 North Carolina’s leading scorer this season as he’s putting up 15.3 points, 3.6 assists and 2.1 rebounds per game. The freshman seems to have really found his footing over the last few games as White had big games against Texas and UCLA for the Tar Heels.
Without White in the lineup, the Tar Heels should be fine against a team like UNC-Wilmington — although seeing where the lead-guard minutes go will be a subplot to monitor. After Wednesday’s game, North Carolina doesn’t play again until they face Gonzaga on Dec. 15, so that will give White an additional 10 days of rest before he’s probably really needed.
(H/t: Jonathan M. Alexander, The News & Observer)