North Carolina will get multiple on-campus opportunities to impress its top remaining senior target, Kevin Knox.
With his Tampa (Fla.) Catholic team in North Carolina for the John Wall Holiday Invitational in Raleigh, Knox plans to take an unofficial visit to the Smith Center for UNC's game against Monmouth on Dec. 28.
Six weeks later, Knox will return to Chapel Hill for his official visit, beginning on Feb. 4. The Tar Heels host Notre Dame that day.
Finally, Knox will watch two of his finalists on the final day of the 2016-17 regular season. He'll be at UNC when it hosts Duke in primetime on Saturday, March 4.
Those three Chapel Hill trips are in addition his two prior visits to UNC earlier this year, attending the UNC-Pittsburgh game on Feb. 14 and a UNC practice several weeks later.
"We're definitely in phase II of Kevin's recruitment now," his father, Kevin Knox Sr., told Inside Carolina on Tuesday. "Phase I was picking the teams that we are going to consider. Now that we've done that, we're taking the visits and that's the start of Phase II. We're using the visits to find out out what coach Kevin wants to play for, to find out what the type of environment he wants to be around, to find out what type of system that the team's he's considering are playing. Then, during phase II, we can visit teams, coaches and players to see all those things. We can see how the season goes, see who stays, see who leaves, see who graduates, just all of that. That's what we're calling the bowl of gumbo soup and we're gonna use that to help him make his decision."
Besides a lot of traveling to see games at Kentucky, UNC, Duke and Florida State - his four finalists - it also means lots of time in front of the television screen.
"We watched a lot of basketball this opening weekend," said Knox Sr. "Obviously, we're predominantly watching his four finalists. We're doing that because, when it comes time to make that decision, he can honestly say he's done his research. He's watched the games, watched the coaches coach and determined the best place for him to play."
Roy Williams hopes the best place for Knox is Carolina. As he often does, Williams told the Knox family early on he planned to use all of his allotted visits to watch Knox play and meet with his family. On Nov. 6, he made another in-home visit with Knox (his prior in-home with Knox was on Sept. 14).
"It was a pretty standard visit," said Knox. "He called up and said 'Hey, I'm looking to come with visit with you soon.' So, he and (assistant) coach (Steve) Robinson came to the house. We talked a little North Carolina basketball and then we watched some Sunday Night Football (Denver Broncos at Oakland Raiders). That was pretty much it and then he flew back."
As rising seniors signed their National Letters of Intent over the last six days, Knox Sr. said he noticed something about the way his son's four finalists have communicated - it hasn't changed.
"In some circles or for some coaches, if they don't get this guy then they'll start calling you more," Knox Sr. said. "I can honestly say that with Kevin that's not been the case. Those teams that we have as his finalists, they've always wanted him really, really bad and they still want him really, really bad. Nothing has changed in that regard."
Knox took an official visit to Duke on Oct. 28. He'll be at Florida State on Jan. 7 and Kentucky on Jan. 28.