Junior to Watch: Akini Adkins

The Tar Heels have been keeping an eye on Akini Adkins, a lean 6-10 forward at Tallahassee (FL) Leon.

"Akini is still getting letters from schools just getting started in recruiting him," said his mother, Sheila Adkins. "Some schools out West are just getting involved. I believe it's because they sometimes think a kid wants to stay close to home, but with Akini -- no one is out of the game at this point. The door is wide open and he is still learning about all the different schools and what they have to offer on the court and academically. His dad and I have both told him to also consider how much weight a diploma will carry after basketball."

The Cameroon native is averaging 17 points, 12 rebounds and over three blocks per game.

He's gotten scholarship offers already from Florida State, UConn and Alabama, while a large number of schools have been in frequent contact.

"Louisville just sent something, it was handwritten from Rick Pitino and they're going to recruit him. As well as Florida and North Carolina both."

But Shelia added that neither the Tar Heels nor the Gators have extended an offer to this date, though UNC head coach Matt Doherty has made the trip to Tallahassee to watch a Akini in action.

"(North Carolina) is recruiting him, but I think they're gonna wait and see what else is out there," she added.

One advantage that the Tar Heels may have with Adkins is the fact that current freshman wing Jackie Manuel also played with the Tallahassee Wildcats' summer team. And she confirmed that they'd already spoken with Jackie about the Heels.

When North Carolina started recruiting Adkins, Shelia noted that the family was aware of the program's storied success.

"Of course, some eyebrows are going to raise when the Tar Heels started recruiting him," she said. "A lot of people are discussing how they're having a bad year, but it's a rebuilding year for them and we certainly understand that."

IC Recruiting Analyst Clint Jackson provided us with the following scouting report on Adkins.

"I'd like to see the kid again this spring and summer, but I was really impressed with his skills and the way he handled the ball so well at his height. He's grown over the course of the last year and reportedly is becoming more of an inside player, but the question is -- is he a power forward or a wing forward on the next level?

"He's probably a combo-forward right now, and at 6'10 -- he only tips the scales at 195, which is pretty thin. But the kid is young at 16 and certainly has time to fill out his frame some and get stronger for interior play at the college level. As a prospect -- he's actually more attractive skill-wise than athletically at this point. And that's not saying that he's a bad athlete either, because he's not. He's just got more Josh Childress in him than say, James White at this point."

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