UNC Ramping up Interest in Elite Center Brandon McCoy

San Diego center is ranked No. 15 in the class of 2017.

CERRITOS, Calif. – Brandon McCoy’s stock is on the rise and the UNC coaching staff is well aware.

“North Carolina is recruiting me hard,” said McCoy, a 7-0 center from San Diego. “Michigan State, UCLA, Arizona, USC, so many schools. Wake Forest and some others. They’ve been talking to me a lot.”

“Coach (C.B.) McGrath texts me almost every day,” he added about UNC’s assistant coach. “Sometimes I text back, but I always see his texts.

“He says I’m a perfect fit for them and they can get me better. You hear that from everyone, but it’s pretty genuine what they are saying.

“I watched them this year. When I was younger I used to watch Michigan State, but I watched them this year throughout the tournament. I also met Brice (Johnson) at Adidas Nations. I didn’t know he was that good.”

Playing for Cal Supreme on the Nike EYBL AAU circuit, McCoy has averaged 17.7 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks per game while shooting 51.6 percent from the field. His ranking in the Class of 2017 has already climbed to No. 15 at Scout.com.

Throughout the four EYBL sessions, McCoy was a model of consistency as he scored in double figures every outing.

“A lot of players say they want to work hard, but Brandon actually does it,” said Cal Supreme director Gary Franklin. “Every practice he goes through two to three shirts because he’s working so hard.”

This past high school season, McCoy led Cathedral Catholic to a 21-7 record in his first season with the team as he averaged 21.2 points and 10.2 rebounds per game.

“It was super fun,” said McCoy. “Our gym holds about 5,000 people and it gets sold out, so it’s a great school and great experience. I want to get better and I want to go for a championship. You never know, but I’m going to put my team in the position to try and win a championship next season.”

Even with McCoy’s recent rise, he still has plenty of untapped potential given basketball has not always been his top priority.

“I started boxing when I was nine in Chicago and I stopped when I was 14,” said McCoy. “I think it helped with my footwork and my competitiveness. You can’t come into the ring scared. You gotta believe in yourself, so I think that helped with my competitiveness and also helped me run like a guard.

“I always liked basketball a lot, but I never took it that seriously. When I moved out to California, I took it seriously and then I hit a big growth spurt and started to think I could actually do this. So then I started working even harder and that’s because of the people who believed in me, even when I wasn’t anything.”

McCoy also has plenty of interests outside of the sports world.

“I play the trombone, guitar, piano, marimba,” said McCoy. “I’m trying to learn other instruments like the trumpet and saxophone. I want to learn everything. Once you learn the basics of one instrument it’s easy to learn other instruments.”

Going forward McCoy will participate in the USA U18 tryouts next week in Colorado Springs and then will play in the Nike Peach Jam during the first live period of July.

“I want a (UNC) offer, but they are probably waiting for Coach (Roy) Williams to see and offer me, but they are really recruiting me hard.

“I haven’t thought about visits yet, but possibly at the end of the summer. Right now, I’m focused on getting better and learning the game and focusing on my work ethic and the USA tryouts.”


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