Basketball players

UNC Basketball’s Top 100 Players Updated: 31-40

(Photo: Jim Hawkins/Inside Carolina)

High season (2022): 16.3 ppg, 13.1 rpg, 1.5 apg, 1.7 bpg, 56.9 FG%, 67.0 FT%, 59.6 TS%, 4.00 WORP / 35 games

Career averages (3 years): 13.0 ppg, 10.0 rpg, 1.2 apg, 1.3 bpg, 55.6 FG%, 66.1 FT%, 58.5 TS%, 7.61 career WORP, 2.84 WORP / 1000 minutes

Bacot, of course, still has time in Chapel Hill to climb even further up the list. But he’s already placed himself in rarefied air during his first three years as a Tar Heel. Just his seventh game in college, Bacot had 23 points, 12 rebounds and 6 blocks to lead UNC over a top-10 team from Oregon to the Bahamas. He would show flashes of that brilliance in his first two years at Carolina, but lacked consistency (both in terms of energy and production). Things finally started to click in March of its second season. He scored in double figures in each of the Heels’ six games that month, averaging 16.7 points and 9.5 rebounds. Although not quite the level of relentless effort and energy that would become his trademark as a junior, Bacot’s breakout began in earnest in March 2021.

His 2022 season, still fresh in the minds of Tar Heel fans, needs little statistical tweaking. Bacot became an absolute double-double machine on the way to one of the most dominating window-cleaning campaigns in Carolina history. During a three-game streak in January, he averaged 26.3 points and 17.0 rebounds against Notre Dame, Virginia and Georgia Tech. In a pair of wins over NC State, he combined for 46 points, 31 rebounds and 11 blocked shots. While injuries reduced his scoring efficiency in the NCAA Tournament, Bacot still averaged 15.3 points and 16.5 rebounds in the Heels’ run to the title game.

Bacot is within reach of a few lofty career milestones as a senior. He believes he will break UNC’s all-time rebound mark, needing just 219 to break Tyler Hansbrough’s record. He also needs 564 points to enter Carolina’s top 10 in that category, and 48 blocks to enter the top 5 there. As a junior, he scored 635 points with 65 blocks. He also looks like a safe bet to become the first heel since Hansbrough to make two consecutive all-ACC first teams as well as three consecutive all-ACC teams (he was 3rd team in all leagues as a sophomore). ACC Player of the Year and national All-American honors are also within reach for Bacot. If he does all of that and, like Hansbrough, can cap his Carolina career with a championship, Bacot will enter the hall of UNC basketball legends.