Tokoto Joins Carolina Family

North Carolina prioritized J.P. Tokoto early and he was the first member of the 2012 class to pick up a Tar Heel offer. That effort paid off on Thursday.

Tokoto gave North Carolina and Roy Williams the nod, becoming UNC's second verbal commitment from the junior class.

"I'm going to be a Tar Heel," Tokoto said in an exclusive interview. "I'm going to North Carolina."

"We feel like North Carolina is the best fit for my family and I," he added. "The coaching staff is all great guys. I like the team. I like the history and the education I can get at North Carolina. It's the total package. It's all there."

Throughout the recruiting process, Tokoto, a standout at Menomonee (Wisc.) Falls entertained interest and offers from a huge number of schools nationwide. His eight finalists were Connecticut, Marquette, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, UCLA and Wisconsin – however other offering schools included Duke, Indiana, Michigan State, Tennessee and Texas.

But Tokoto said UNC's welcoming approach stood out.

"It was definitely their hospitality and how they great they treated everybody down there," Tokoto said. "Everybody was happy and very nice. That definitely caught my attention. The campus is beautiful.

Tokoto with Roy Williams during Aug. 2009 visit
(Courtesy Wisconsin Playground Warriors)
"The people down there are very nice," he continued. "The basketball team is awesome. They all get along. I got a chance to sit down with them after lunch and in between classes and I just felt like I belonged there."

Being an early target for the Tar Heels, Tokoto was able to get to know Williams and his staff quite well. He cited Williams' approach and the way he recruited him as one of the many reasons he opted for the Heels.

"I've been talking to Coach since my sophomore year and every time I'm on the phone with Coach we talk about basketball for at least 20 minutes. But the rest of the time, say an hour, we talk about how things have been going and life itself.

"I just loved the way he treated me and treated my family. He's just an all-around great guy and I love that about him."

Tokoto joins Marcus Paige to make up UNC's current 2012 recruiting class.

"I can't wait to play with Marcus," Tokoto said. "I've always played against him. I love his game. He's a pass first guard. I love Marcus' game and I can't wait to play with him."

Through 22 games, Tokoto is averaging 20.5 points per outing this season. His team plays in the WIAA regional final on Saturday.

J.P. Tokoto Profile

Inside Carolina Top Stories