College Hoops

One UNC basketball player appears to be climbing NBA draft boards

One UNC basketball player appears to be climbing NBA draft boards

Ingram’s season came to an end with a narrow Sweet 16 loss to Alabama, posting the kind of numbers we’ve been accustomed to seeing all year — 12 points, nine rebounds, five assists and two steals doing.

It was an overall excellent season for the 21-year-old Ingram, who revived his NBA draft stock after transferring from Stanford, showing off his strong feel for the game, improved 3-point shooting (39%) and ability to guard multiple positions and increased intensity level.

There is nothing particularly glamorous about Ingram’s profile — mediocre shot-creation prowess, athleticism and occasional passivity and all-around inconsistency offensively (including 61% free throw shooting) — but there’s also a significant need in today’s NBA for players in his mold. Ingram doesn’t need plays called for him, rarely steps outside his comfort zone and has the frame and length to defend up and down the floor.

Ingram’s ability to carve out a niche in the NBA will likely depend heavily on whether he can make perimeter shots consistently, but he’s done well to position himself this season and will likely get looks starting late in the first round depending on how he performs in the pre-draft process. — Givony

Ingram will be a very critical decision for UNC’s program. Being mocked around pick No. 34 is huge, especially since this is a weaker draft class this year. If he does return, there’s a better chance that he could hurt his draft stock rather than improve it. His ceiling is already high with the intangibles, things the NBA loves.

We should know soon which way Ingram is leaning.

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