Heels Continue to Recruit Kelly

Ryan Kelly has been a frequent visitor to Chapel Hill this season, including attending two Tar Heel games in the last few weeks. Inside Carolina talked with the 6-9, 200-pound junior from Raleigh (N.C.) Ravenscroft School about the end of his season and the status of his recruitment.

How did the season turn out for you?
"I enjoyed the season a lot. We had some ups and downs, but we had a good record and we finished 24-6. We had a tough ending. We lost in the first round of the state tournament and you never want to go out that way, but we played hard. It was just one of those nights where the ball wouldn't go in the hole."

You picked up the Conference Player of the Year award - what did you think of that?
"It's a cool accomplishment, but more than anything I think that my teammates made me better. My individual accomplishments aren't quite like winning a conference tournament."

How do you think you personally played this year?
"I thought I had a pretty good season. Again I attribute a lot of that to my teammates, but I thought that I played pretty well individually. With the teams we played against I feel like I had a pretty good season. I've worked hard to get better and I keep working on my game all the time. With hard work comes reward."

How is the recruiting process going?
"It's going well and I'm still enjoying it. That's really all I can ask for."

You've taken some visits the past few weeks. "Where have you traveled to recently?
Last weekend I went up to visit Notre Dame. That was fun. It was a good visit. I enjoyed it. Just [Saturday] I went to the State/Duke game. It was an exciting game. It was a great game. It was a tough one for NC State, but it was very exciting."

You went to a UNC game recently, how was that trip?
"It was good. We went to a game against Virginia Tech. It was a good game although Carolina beat them up pretty good. It was fun to be at. It's fun to get to go to all of these games. I try and watch all of the teams that I'm looking at as much as possible, so I can get a good feel for where I might be playing."

(Note: Kelly made a return trip to Chapel Hill for Tuesday night's UNC-FSU game - pictured at right)

What approach is North Carolina taking with your recruitment?
"They are recruiting me the right way. All of the schools are recruiting me the right way, but it's convenient that they are right here. It's a little easier to get to games. Coach Williams is a classy guy and I've really enjoyed talking to him when I go over there. It's just fun."

Has the UNC staff talked to you about where they see you fitting into their team and their recruiting plans?
"They just kind of want to continue recruiting me is the way they put it. I understand that and it's an honor that they still want to recruit me even after the type of players that they have received commitments from."

Have the visits to so many schools helped you formulate what you're looking for?
"I'm still trying to get a feel for what I want in a school. I know I want great academics and that's important to me, but at the same time I know I have to find the best fit basketball-wise, too. That's what has been so great about going to all of these games and talking to coaches. It's just been a really exciting time."

Do you have a timetable on when you want to make a college decision?
"I feel like I really have to get a gut feeling for it. I don't know when that will be. That could be tomorrow or it could be at the end of my senior year. I just have to get that gut feeling and find the right place."

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