Heels Firmly Among Kennard's Favorites

NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. --- The sidelines were filled with prominent college head coaches when Luke Kennard took the floor at the Peach Jam on Thursday.

Roy Williams, Mike Krzyzewski, Tom Izzo, John Calipari, Thad Matta, Billy Donovan were among those in attendance -- a heavy turnout for any game, let alone a 16-and-under contest.

"It's nice to see all those guys there, but at the same time you've got to be a team player," said Kennard, a 2015 prospect, after his team cruised to a win. "It can be hard to (block it out) sometimes but you've just got to."

For Roy Williams, this was the first opportunity to watch the 6-5 Franklin (Ohio) guard in a game. After Kennard visited Chapel Hill in March, Williams first attempted an evaluation viewing in April when he traveled to Ohio to see Kennard's King James team in a local tournament. But the opposing team didn't show, so there was no game.

Williams let Kennard know that he'd try again at the Peach Jam.

"He told me he was going to come," Kennard said. "He called me when I was at the airport two days ago and he said ‘Hopefully the other team shows up this time so I don't just get to watch you guys warmup.'"

As for what comes from Williams's viewings this week remains to be seen - be it continued interest or maybe even a scholarship offer.

"Hopefully I'll get a call later," Kennard said. "But I'm not sure yet."

When asked where UNC stood on his list, Kennard responded "definitely top five." As for the rest of his top five schools, it's more of a list of four, with four contenders for that fifth spot.

"Ohio State, Michigan, North Carolina, Duke and then it's a tough one between Florida, Kentucky, Louisville and Indiana, too," he said.

The Tar Heels are recruiting Kennard to be a combo guard and he's got the skills for that role, with a reliable jumper, a driving mentality, and also a knack for setting up teammates.

His coaches, and some schools recruiting him, think he's even more versatile than that.

"Some have said the 1, 2 and the 3," Kennard said regarding what college position he's being recruited for. "My high school team I play the 1, here I play the 2 and the 3 and sometimes the 1."

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