UNC just behind rival in 247Sports ACC Hoops rankings

It’s never too early to start talking about college basketball, particularly if you’re the North Carolina Tar Heels.

I feel like this is said every year, but you truly do have every reason to believe UNC will contend for an NCAA Championship.

North Carolina’s 2024-2025 roster is headlined by the return of RJ Davis, the reigning ACC Player of the Year. The Tar Heels bring in a Top-10 recruiting class highlighted by All-Americans Drake Powell and Ian Jackson, return a pair of talented guards in Elliot Cadeau and Seth Trimble, plus they nabbed Cade Tyson in the transfer portal.

With all North Carolina has going for itself heading into the coming college hoops season, which begins with games in November, there’s no surprise 247Sports ranked UNC second amongst ACC teams in its Way-Too-Early power rankings, just a spot behind archrival Duke.

“UNC’s backcourt should be among the nation’s best,” Isaac Trotter wrote. “RJ Davis is a bonafide superstar and getting a fifth season – out of an All-American like this – is a luxury few can replicate. Davis is a cheat code and he’s going to stay a cheat code. Five-star Ian Jackson brings a jolt of downhill explosiveness. Seth Trimble can move his feet and be one of the best perimeter defenders in the country. If Trimble’s jumper progresses, he’ll play early and often. Elliot Cadeau, for all of his real flaws, is still young and deserves the benefit of the doubt that he will get better. The Cade Tyson addition is just perfect. The Belmont transfer provides the flamethrower from deep that UNC so desperately needed.

“Carolina is going to be really, really good if Davis stays healthy. Duke has the (small) edge now, but Hubert Davis’ moves down the stretch could seal UNC as the cream of the crop in the ACC (again).”

I’m completely fine with the Blue Devils being ranked ahead of us. These are simply just preseason rankings, plus Duke never lives up to its talent on paper.

There’s no doubt the Tar Heels are extremely talented, but they’ll be a significantly younger, inexperienced squad.

Can North Carolina live up to its preseason hype once again?

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Story originally appeared on Tarheels Wire