Posted: 10:09 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013
By Brian Barbour
A few news items as the start of basketball practice is a lot closer than you think.
A handful of game times were announced late last week. UNC will tip off this 2013-14 season at 9 PM on November 8th in Chapel Hill versus Oakland. The first public glimpse of the Heels will be a week earlier at 7:30 PM vs UNC Pembroke. The Heels will face Holy Cross on November 15th at 8 PM, visit Jerod Haase's UAB squad on December 1st at 3 PM and host UNC Wilmington on New Year's Eve at 5 PM.
The roster for the 2013-14 season has been updated with a few number and weight changes. On the number side, J.P. Tokoto is switching from 25 to 13. Joel James is going from 0 to 42 and Wade Moody will wear 55 instead of 3 which will be worn by freshman Kennedy Meeks. Isaiah Hicks will wear 22 and Nate Brit will take 0. And the number changes are largely irrelevant, just random offseason discussion fodder.
Looking at the weights, some notable changes. Marcus Paige is being listed at 175 which is 18 pounds up from last season. Tokoto is 15 pounds heavier at 200 and Joel James is up to 280 from 260. Brice Johnson, who was a beanpole last season at 6-9, 187 pounds is now listed at 210. Meeks is being show at 290 lbs but that doesn't seem to agree with the scuttlebutt that he looked in-shape and had his weight down from what he was in high school. Out of all these changes, Johnson and Paige bulking up are probably the most significant. Paige was a bit light last season and if his weight gain was mostly muscle, it will serve him well. Likewise Johnson needed some bulk to keep from being pushed around so much in the post. At 210 lbs, that still might be an issue but it is a step in the right direction.
And it should be noted, P.J. Hairston is still on the roster and as far as we know still suspended. On the limited legal front Hairston's speeding ticket from May when he was cited for going 54 in a 45 was continued. The Rowan County Joyide(get your t-shirts now) was settled with Hairston pleading down to 75 in a 65 and unsafe movements. The drugs charges were dismissed a few weeks back. There is no word, at this point, on what the NCAA will do with Hairston being behind the wheel of a rental car that didn't belong to him in two of these cases. Basketball Tip Times and Roster Updates