"The first time coach (C.B.) McGrath called, he was just saying how much I've progressed since last summer," said Copeland. "He told me I've really grown as a player and he was just introducing me to UNC basketball and that he wants me to go over there for a visit next week."
Growing up in Raleigh and the son of a UNC graduate, Copeland said he already knows a good deal about the Carolina program. He's been on the campus before and has attended UNC basketball camps in the past.
"Roy Williams is a great coach and my friend Isaiah (Hicks) is going there and he tells me how excited he is to go to the school," Copeland explained. "I've watched several of their players like Reggie Bullock, and seen some of their recruits, so I'm pretty familiar with them."
With an ability to play in the post and take bigger defenders off the dribble, Copeland considers himself a hybrid forward.
"I can play the '3' and '4' - whatever the team needs," he said. "I can shoot outside, I can get some rebounds and blocks and I like to run the floor in transition. I just do whatever I can to make the team better and win."
Copeland's ascension came while running with the Garner Road AAU program this summer. Dwayne West, the program's director, said Copeland's potential is "through the roof."
"Isaac is a little like Anthony Davis," he said. "In the last year two years has grown from 6-2 to 6-10, he's kind of a different monster. We see him as a pure '3.' He does drills with our guards and wings when he comes in for workouts. He has really nice touch, can shoot the three and finishes well at the basket. He's just really skilled."
Copeland was originally a class of 2013 player, but reclassified to 2014 – and transferred to The Miller School – after a knee injury forced him to sit out most of his junior year at Ravenscroft (N.C.) Raleigh.
"I broke the growth plate in my left knee last summer, during pickup, when I tried to dunk on a teammate," he said. "When I came back I saw limited minutes, and my team won the state championship, but I wish I was more part of it. I was a young 2013 at the time so that also played a part in my decision. (The) Miller (School) was a good decision and fit for me, it'll help me get ready for college, get stronger and mature as a player.
"The part of me not being able to play during high school sticks with me right now. I used it as motivation to play hard and I think that came out a lot this summer. Playing with Garner Road we won a lot of games and I felt like I was a key part of the team. I just want to play hard and have fun." Concerning the possibility of reclassifying back to 2013, Copeland noted his decision to join the 2014 class is final.
"He's actually was already a young 2013 kid," said West. "Physically, he's developed more like a 2014 kid because he's only one month older than most of them."
Copeland has offers from NC State, Boston College, Virginia, West Virginia, Rutgers, Auburn and Virginia Tech. West thinks he can be a top 25 player in the class of 2014 with continued hard work and a commitment to improve.
"There are guys that are 6-10 that can't play," West explained. "There are guys that are 6-10 with talent that don't perform at the highest level. Then there are guys that have the skill, can perform, but don't do it all the time. Then you have the guys that can go get it all the time no matter what -- he's somewhere between the last two.
"His meter has gone closer to 'no matter what' as his confidence has increased. The more confidence he gets, the more of a killer he's going to be. I think with time and strength will come more confidence. Once that happens, he's going to be a very big problem for anybody that's on the other team."