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I can only speculate the performance of the 2012-13 roster, but on paper it would appear the Tar Heels have great depth—despite losing four of their starters to the NBA. Having Dexter Strickland and Leslie McDonald back will help alleviate that situation.
Starting with the point guard, I assume the responsibilities of the floor general would fall on 4-star recruit Marcus Paige. Dexter Strickland and transfer Luke Davis will likely spell him when he needs a rest. As long as everyone stays healthy, the transition from Kendall Marshall should be virtually seamless.
The 2 and 3 positions are where things get a little funky as far as predicting the depth chart. Carolina has an abundance of players that have spent time as shooting guards while Harrison Barnes headed up the small forward position. Now that he's gone, things will have to be mixed up.
I think Strickland and Leslie McDonald will probably be the first in at the 2. Strickland provides great perimeter defense, while Leslie McDonald led the team in three-point percentage last year before going down in the offseason with a knee injury. P.J. Hairston and Reggie Bullock will also take turns at the 2, but I expect they will see more time at the 3.
With Hairston at 6'6” and Bullock at 6'7”, they will likely be able to take over where Barnes left off. Both are good shooters that are only getting better as their careers progress. They can also slash to the basket as well as Barnes.
The only problem with the 2 and 3 is that it's too loaded to find a good spot for J.P. Tokoto. I'd like to see him start, but I'm not sure he will with the overloaded backcourt. Tokoto doesn't have great range compared to Hairston and Bullock, but he may be a better slasher. Needless to say, ol' Roy is in quite the pickle, having to choose his starters.
The power forward position is much more clear-cut. James Michael McAdoo will definitely be the incumbent starter, filling the void of John Henson. Freshman Brice Johnson will see time right behind McAdoo, while returning sophomore Jackson Simmons will be limited. Simmons could surprise and overtake Johnson as the backup, but I wouldn't go betting my next paycheck on it.
Finally, there is the 5.
With Tyler Zeller gone, it's going to be a fresh start for the Heels. Incoming freshman Joel James should fill the hole nicely, and brings a little more physicality on the block. We will probably see Brice Johnson and sophomore Desmond Hubert take turns spelling James. Hubert could be a surprise next season if he adds some offense to go along with his shot-blocking ability.
As you can see, the Heels are so stacked, it's hard to predict the starting squad. There could be some messiness as Coach Williams tries to nail down the perfect rotation, but this kind of depth is a great problem to have.