Larry Drew wants you to know he's staying at North Carolina

It's standard operating procedure for schools to issue a release to local and national media whenever a player decides to leave the program.

Rarely, however, does a school feel the need to announce one of its players isn't transferring.

Fed up with persistent speculation that he may leave North Carolina, sophomore point guard Larry Drew Jr. had school officials issue a 179-word statement Friday afternoon reaffirming that he plans to remain with the Tar Heels next season.

"Last week when we were in New York for the NIT, several reporters from North Carolina asked me about transferring after the season. I said that I would always be a Tar Heel. I thought my answer would end the speculation, but my teammates, family, coaches and I continue to be asked about me transferring.

"I want to again confirm that I am not transferring anywhere. I eagerly look forward to preparing for next season and competing with my Carolina teammates as we hope to improve on our play from this past season. I have my own basketball dreams and I know I have to work hard this summer to reach them and help Carolina reach our team goals.

"I've been asked about these rumors since the day we won at Wake Forest in February and I really want to put all this stuff to rest. I am a Tar Heel and will continue to learn from Coach (Roy) Williams and his staff to become a more effective player and leader and help us have a great season in 2011."

To be fair to us media types, there was no shortage of reasons to believe Drew was considering a transfer. North Carolina has McDonald's All-American point guard Kendall Marshall set to enroll next season yet Williams was reportedly still scouting other senior point guards earlier this month.

Drew started all 36 games for North Carolina as a sophomore, but his production tailed off badly in the second half of ACC play. The Southern California native averaged 8.5 points and 5.9 assists, but shot just 40.5 percent from the floor.

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