UNC Basketball: How Each Top Recruiting Target Fits Heels' Offense
North Carolina has managed to stay ahead of the game to this point in the 2014 recruiting season. Roy Williams and the Tar Heels have snatched up three of the top 15 players in the country, according to ESPN 100.
But the job will not be complete until UNC is able to lock down a shooting guard.
Facing the reality of Leslie McDonald completing his eligibility and P.J. Hairston likely entering the NBA draft, the search for their replacement(s) has become Roy's top priority.
That's where No. 11 Rashad Vaughn and No. 16 Devin Booker come in.
They are the top shooting guards in the country, and both would fit perfectly into the system at Chapel Hill. Over the next couple of slides, I'll break down how.
Carolina looks to be loaded with talent at every position except the 2, and Rashad Vaughn is the type of player who would make the Tar Heels instant title contenders in 2015.
Vaughn is a pure scorer, in every sense of the word. He isn't just a guy who's going to shoot spot-up threes; he's going to knock down pull-up and step-back jumpers, or weave his way to the rim.
He also has a high release, making his shots even tougher to guard.
His handles are surprisingly tight for a junior in high school, allowing him to access the full extent of his athleticism in the half court. His versatility and movement will force defenses his way, opening up space for UNC's plethora of post players.
Vaughn's dribbles and athleticism would also pay dividends in transition—and we know how important that aspect of the game is to Roy Williams. He is extremely agile, slicing through defenses and finishing strong at the rim with his 6'6", 200-pound frame.
But he also knows when to dish the rock and doesn't force his own shot on fast breaks.
Vaughn isn't quite as complete on the defensive end. But his athleticism, lateral movement and overall IQ lead one to believe he is perfectly capable of becoming an elite defender, too.
Vaughn would be a perfect fit in Roy's up-and-down system. There simply isn't a better option for North Carolina or Vaughn.
Hopefully, both parties see that potential.
With the expansive talent and superior athleticism of Vaughn, Devin Booker should be considered the secondary option. But that doesn't mean Booker can't help the Tar Heels to a title.
Nor does it mean he is lacking game.
Devin Booker is widely recognized as the purest shooter in his class. With his hair-trigger release and effortless stroke, he'll be singeing nylon for years to come in the collegiate ranks.
The 2014-15 Tar Heels will be loaded with passers and scorers, which should free up Booker for plenty of open treys.
Booker is working to expand his game off the bounce, and it's beginning to show this summer. He has added a pull-up jumper to his mid-range game, which is forcing defenders to back off of him a bit.
He's improving his defense, too.
Booker will probably never be an elite defender with his lack of lateral speed and agility, but he plays smart enough to make opposing offenses pay for any miscues.
Those miscues lead to the transition game, where Booker also excels. He isn't a coast-to-coast kind of guy at the next level, but he can pass or finish at the rim with the best of them.
Whether it's an outlet, no-look or a craft pass between defenders, Booker can help maximize Carolina's transition game with timely dimes.
Booker's game may not have the flashiness of Vaughn's, but his basketball IQ and marksmanship will be more than adequate to fill in the hole McDonald and Hairston (potentially) will leave behind.
The Tar Heels don't necessarily need a go-to scorer in this situation.
Roy Williams could snag both of these prospects, which would be ideal. But chances of that happening are very slim. The roster is filling up quickly, and it's tough to say if either of these top recruits will be willing to ride pine.
But no matter which way it goes, the Tar Heels will be set up for title contention with either of these outstanding young players.