Roy Williams Checks Out Blackwell

A family connection and an interest in a promising 2016 prospect brought the UNC coaching staff to Nashville, Tenn. on Tuesday.

Roy Williams and assistant coach Steve Robinson were in town to see sophomore Braxton Blackwell of Nashville (Tenn.) CPA.

"I actually found out I'd say a day before they came," Blackwell said. "It was pretty cool to see them down there."

In the game against Marshall County, Blackwell scored 25 points and went 11-for-11 from the field.

"I've been playing really well," Blackwell said. "I'm leading the team in points and bounds."

The 6-foot-6 Blackwell ranks among's top 30 players in the 2016 class, described his role on his team as versatile.

"Honestly [I'm expected to] just play hard every time I'm on the court, whether it's offense getting points, rebounds and assists or defense just getting blocks, steals and deflections."

To go with Williams, Blackwell has had a host of head coaches in to see him this season.

Josh Pastner, Tony Bennett, Kevin Stallings, Cuonzo Martin, Rick Ray, Ed Cooley and Johnnie Jones have all stopped in to see him.

Williams's visit was his first trip to see Blackwell, who described the Tar Heels' level of interest in him as light so far.

"It's pretty soft right now," Blackwell said about UNC's interest. "I think it'll start picking up pretty soon. Coach Roy is a great coach. His staff is a great staff. Of course North Carolina has great tradition so it's definitely a school I'll be interested in."

North Carolina has discussed a possible visit with Blackwell, who has taken recent trips to Indiana, Auburn, Vanderbilt and Memphis, but a date has not been determined.

"They want me to come up as soon as possible and I'm definitely going to try and get up there," he said.

What is Blackwell's take on North Carolina?

"Of course, they have Coach Williams, who is one of the best, if not the best, college coaches right now," he said. "Playing for a Hall of Famer would be great. They have a great tradition at North Carolina and I've heard great facilities and their fan base is top notch."

Blackwell has a special connection to UNC's coaching staff. Assistant Steve Robinson is Blackwell's uncle. He described their relationship as "pretty close."

"I think it gives them a couple of points," he said. "I've been up there a lot. I actually went to a lot of their camps a lot when I was little. It's kind of weird now going from being able to talk to your uncle to now not being able to talk to him at all."

"I'd say three or four summers I've been up there," he added. "In my elementary days when they had Raymond Felton and Rashad McCants."

Blackwell said he's not looking to make a college choice in the near future. He said he'll re-examine his recruitment in the summer after he can begin talking to coaches on the phone.

"Right now every school that has offered or has interest is basically my number one," he said. "I won't cut my list down until I'm able to talk to those coaches on June 15th. So really end of the summer or beginning of school year I'll cut my list down."

Blackwell claims scholarship offers from Auburn, Alabama, Indiana, North Carolina State, Florida, Providence, LSU, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Memphis. Kentucky and Louisville are also showing interest.

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