Hubert Davis admits he’s learning how to manage his bench
One of the biggest criticisms of North Carolina head coach Hubert Davis has been the use of his bench.
Last season, the Tar Heels relied on the “Iron 5” to get to the national championship. Occasional contributions came from Puff Johnson, D’Marco Dunn, Justin McKoy and Dontrez Styles in the NCAA Tournament. This season saw a little too much of the same. Davis struggled with combinations for his bench as players did not see playing time.
With the season over, Davis reflected back on his second year during his weekly radio show. And one of the comments he had was about how he struggled to manage his bench at times:
“I felt like this year we were always trying to find a combination off the bench that works and sometimes I got it wrong,” Davis said via C.L. Brown of the News & Observer. “And most of the time, or sometimes I got it right and that’s something that I’m continuing to learn as a second-year head coach.”
We saw Jalen Washington, Seth Trimble, Tyler Nickel, Dunn, Styles and Johnson get some playing time. But it felt like the playing time wasn’t enough. Toward the end of the season players visibly wore down, and one has to wonder if using the bench differently would have helped.
Nickel has already entered the transfer portal and the lack of playing time could lead to more players leaving in the next few weeks.
Either way, Davis has to find a way to manage the bench and develop players.
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