Andrew Wiggins Would Be Harrison Barnes 2.0 for UNC Tar Heels

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Andrew Wiggins Would Be Harrison Barnes 2.0 for UNC Tar Heels
photo credit: sportsillustrated.cnn.com

Andrew Wiggins will be in the stands for tonight's North Carolina-Duke game, and he will hopefully realize just how great a fit he would be for the Tar Heels. In fact, he could very well be the second coming of former UNC standout and current NBA rookie Harrison Barnes.

Wiggins has a build very similar to Barnes', standing 6'7", 205 pounds and showing great athletic prowess on the wing.

In fact, let's take a look at Harrison Barnes and his two-year tenure with the Tar Heels. He debuted as a highly-touted freshman with great length and strong athleticism—he averaged 15.7 points and 5.8 boards while shooting 42 percent from the field and 34 percent from three-point range. He had talent, but he still needed to work on his mid-range shot and defensive approach.

Fast forward to his sophomore year, when he posted 17.1 points and 5.2 boards, incorporating his mid-range jumper enough to raise his field-goal percentage to 44 percent. Granted, it's something he still needs to work at on the NBA level, but the fact of the matter is that Barnes' athleticism made him a strong fit in head coach Roy Williams' system.

Wiggins has a skill set very similar to that of Barnes, as he is an athletic wing with a solid three-point shot and incredible dunking abilities. Like Barnes, he needs to improve his mid-range jump shot.

Now let's look at other programs recruiting Wiggins.

Kansas could be a solid fit, but there's no way to determine what type of role he would play there. He can play both shooting guard and small forward, but the Jayhawks are about to lose a key player in center Jeff Withey and probably guard Ben McLemore. Does Wiggins really want to go somewhere without much of a supporting cast?

In Kentucky, he'd be one of many big fish, and whether or not he would be a star is completely up in the air. Everyone wants to play for John Calipari, and establishing a legacy with the Wildcats could prove extremely tough.

The fact is that at North Carolina, Wiggins would be filling an immediate need as well as the void left by Barnes. He'd be a solid defender, incredible dunker and the greatest type of threat that the Tar Heels need at small forward.

So long as he can continue developing and enter each practice and game with a willingness to both play and learn at the highest level, then Wiggins can definitely become the second coming of Barnes for the Tar Heels.

Even if he adjusts his game in such a way that he becomes a player far different than Barnes, that will not be a problem. The fact of the matter is that Williams' system calls for the small forward to be a great slasher, which Wiggins already is.

By becoming a Tar Heel, there's no telling just how great he can truly become.

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