A big reason why the UNC basketball program is one of the favorites to cut down the nets in April is the return of forward Armando Bacot. After a monster junior season, Bacot opted to come back for a fourth season and is one of the best players to return this year.
Bacot is expected to earn a lot of preseason recognition ahead of the 2022-23 campaign and here in September, it’s already started.
The talented big man made Jon Rothstein’s preseason All-Americans on College Hoops Today, joining Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe, Gonzaga’s Drew Timme, Michigan’s Hunter Dickinson, and Indiana’s Trayce Jackson-Davis as first team members.
Here is what Rothstein said about Bacot on the first team:
This 6-10 big man had a double-double in all eight of his postseason games last spring, averaging an impressive 15.1 points and 15.5 rebounds during that span. After leading North Carolina to within inches of a national title last spring, Bacot is back as a bonafide National Player of the Year candidate.
Bacot had a monster junior year at North Carolina, helping them reach the national championship game before he suffered a foot injury that limited his time in the game. He averaged 16.3 points and 13.1 rebounds per game last season, emerging as the Tar Heels’ best player.
If Bacot can match that production or even improve, it would mean good things for UNC’s chances.