The latest "shocker" from North Carolina's head coach Roy Williams came in Wednesday, and it didn't have anything to do with his health.
As I have been preaching throughout the offseason, it would appear freshman point guard Marcus Paige will indeed get the nod over senior combo guard Dexter Strickland. There has been a lot of controversy over who should start. After all, no freshman point guard has started for the Tar Heels since Bobby Frasor in 2005-06.
At UNC's last media day, Roy Williams seemed to, uncharacteristically, make an early decision on his starter at the 1:
Part of it is that Dexter is somewhat limited in what we’re going to do with him in practice. And, Dexter has never been a point guard. That has something to do with it, too.
Marcus Paige has a chance to be really good. He’s a little rascal… but he does know how to play and he has savvy and toughness. I’m really counting on him to be good.
In the same article from Greg Barnes and Inside Carolina, Strickland said he is at about "96 percent" in his recovery from the ACL surgery. Will that mean Leslie McDonald will get the start over him in the early games?
That's a strong possibility until Strickland can participate at 100 percent. It's a long season, and there shouldn't be a rush to get him on the floor for big-time minutes. It's more important they have him at the end of the season.
So where do these new revelations leave us?
It looks like the starters will probably be Marcus Paige, Leslie McDonald, Reggie Bullock, James Michael McAdoo and Joel James when the season tips off with Gardner-Webb on Nov. 9. That's just my educated guess, and the lineup is definitely open to some shuffling as Roy sees what they're made of in practice.
If this is indeed the starting lineup, what will their roles be on offense and defense? That's a good question, and one I'm more than happy to answer. I'll also quickly cover the bench from six to 12.
All quotes, unless otherwise indicated, came from the October issue of Inside Carolina (subscription required). If you're a Carolina fan, be sure to pick up this issue! It's a great preview for the upcoming season.