ABCD: Shaun Livingston

HACKENSACK, N.J. -- Shaun Livingston has nothing to prove. Everyone knows he's one of the elite players in the class and thusly he'll get to choose where he goes to school. And all of a sudden, North Carolina has become a possible destination for the top flight point guard.

And all it took was a phone call from Roy Williams.

"He got back in touch with me last week," Livingston said of the new Carolina coach. "I talked with him and his assistants and now I'm starting up the recruiting process with them."

While the Tar Heels have been found on Livingston's school list from time to time, they weren't a serious candidate until now.

"I liked North Carolina, but I didn't like it too much with Matt Doherty there," he said. "So I liked everything else [at UNC] and then Roy Williams came. I was recruited by Coach Williams at Kansas."

Williams' recruiting pitch to the Peoria, Ill. rising senior was pretty straight forward.


"They just said they were trying to bring in the top dogs in the nation and they wanted to play with the top players," Livingston said.

Carolina's recruitment of Livingston is still in its early stages. He hasn't taken a real visit to the Chapel Hill campus yet and that would obviously have to happen for the Tar Heels to land him.

"I've been there [for the Tournament of Champions the last two years], but I haven't visited," Livingston said. "Hopefully, we'll see how it goes. I've got to talk some more with them and get more familiar with them and we'll see how it goes."

His list of schools now stands at four: Illinois, Arizona, Duke and North Carolina. The Blue Devils are the only ones to have received an unofficial visit and met with him.

There's no doubt about scholarship offers -- as stated before, Livingston has his pick. And a decision could be less than three months away.

"[I'll decide] probably before the season – before Thanksgiving," Livingston said. "I'd like to do that, I'm not saying it's definite, but I'd like to."

Livingston stands 6-6, 175 pounds – a unique size for a point guard. He's tall and wiry, but doesn't back down from contact and doesn't hesitate to take it straight to a defender. In the right setting, his height and range at the point guard spot can wreak havoc on the opposition.

Here, however, it's taken some time to shine.

At last year's ABCD Camp, Livingston was an instant star, taking down the top point guards in his class and establishing himself as the best in 2004. And he did the same earlier this summer at the NBPA Camp and USA Basketball Festival.

His scoring stats in the first day's two games? 2.0 points (1-10 fg). That's not typical of Shaun Livingston, who's as talented a scorer/shooter as he is a passer. Part of the reason for the early struggles was the fact that the ball was rarely in his hands as the floor leader.

"Here you've got players coming in trying to prove what they can do, but I think I've adapted and gotten better the second day," he said.

And he's right, as he looked more comfortable and put up better numbers, averaging 10.0 points (7-13 fg) on day two. His stats through Wednesday evening were 5.8 points, 5.8 assists and 3.3 rebounds.

Don't be fooled by a few mediocre games – he's got nothing to prove. Shaun Livingston is still the No. 1 point guard in the class of 2004.


Inside Carolina Top Stories