TOC: Nolan Dennis Spotlight

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- Nolan Dennis looked up into the sea of blue seats Friday evening and was in awe.

"It's huge, man," Dennis said with a grin as his eyes scanned the Smith Center. "I want to play in something like this."

The 6-5 junior wing from Richland Hills, Texas is in town for the Tournament of Champions this weekend, playing with his AAU squad the Dallas Mustangs. Dennis' first look at the arena left a strong impression.

"All these seats … it's indescribable," he said during a brief postgame interview. "It's breathtaking when you walk in here."

When asked to describe his game, Dennis said: "My main thing is being versatile." That self-evaluation seemed accurate on Friday, as he scored 15 points and demonstrated an unselfish game, the ability to score from inside and out, and a knack for strong defense.

It's those traits, plus his big frame, that has yielded so many scholarship offers already. Dennis' school list stands at six – Memphis, North Carolina, Texas, Kansas, Texas A&M and UCLA

Roy Williams made the trip to Richland Hills last fall and offered a scholarship, and the Tar Heels – with Williams and assistant Steve Robinson leading the way - have aggressively recruited him since.

[They're recruiting me] real hard - real hard," Dennis emphasized. "[Coach Williams] is a good man, he knows a lot about the game. If I commit here, he'll take me under his wing and help me get to the next level."

The Tar Heel program has actually been on Dennis' mind since early childhood.

"This has been my favorite college growing up," he said. "It started when I was young. I love this program. … This is a tradition school – Michael Jordan went here."

Though NCAA rules limit the extent of the visit, Dennis does plan to take a peak at the campus during a break in the action this weekend.

"We're going to try," Dennis said. "When we're not playing a basketball game, we'll probably go around and look at the campus."

But don't expect a decision any time soon. Dennis' list of six schools is by no means final.

"Whoever wants to come in during the summer, I'm wide open," he said. "I'm just going to see what other players do and weigh my options."

Nolan Dennis Profile

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