Henson: 'I'm Ready'

Even as recently as a few years ago, not many saw the transformation of John Henson coming.

Sure, the skinny forward emerged as an intriguing prospect during the spring of his sophomore year at Round Rock High in Texas. But, hardly anybody could have known that the now 6-10 senior at Tampa (Fla.) Sickles would develop into one of the top five prospects in the country.

On Wednesday afternoon, Henson's recruitment will officially come to an end when he signs a letter of intent to play basketball at North Carolina. "I think we're just going to have it at the school so everybody there and the basketball team and parents can come," Henson said of the signing ceremony. "We're doing it at like three o'clock."

Even though he committed to Carolina nearly a year ago, Henson sees signing day as the start of a new chapter in his basketball career. It's one that he's ready for.

"I'm excited to move on to another chapter," Henson said. "I just want to get down to Chapel Hill and go to work. I'm ready."

The way Henson sees it, signing with the Tar Heels is an honor and not something that many kids get to do.

"It feels great signing with a program like (North Carolina)," said Henson. "The added pressure to win games is something that you want. I think it's a blessing to be able to sign with North Carolina. Not too many people get to go there. I know people from my class who wanted to go there but couldn't get an offer so it's a great feeling."

Perhaps more than anything, Henson is excited about the four other guys who will be signing letter of intents along with him.

"I think it's a great recruiting class," said Henson. "All five guys, all five positions. I feel like it's one of the greatest things that could have happened to me. You know you have a close group as you go on in your career. I feel at one point if we all stay that we could all be on the court at the same time and that's a great feeling."

Although he credits his future coaching staff for doing a great job in recruiting, Henson joked that without his commitment, the stellar class may not have come together.

"I was the first one to commit so I feel like I got the ball rolling," laughed Henson. "We actually talked about how it's going to take one guy and then everything is going to take place. I got things started so that's a good feeling to know I got everything moving.

According to Henson, Roy Williams shares his excitement. However, his college coach has also indicated that it's going to be a lot different coaching experience for him next season.

"He's excited to have one of the best classes coming in," said Henson. "He's also prepared for all of the young guys because we're going to be young team overall. He's preparing for that stage because right now he's got a pretty veteran team this year. I think he's ready for a new challenge. But, I'm sure there are going to be some days where he wonders what he got himself into."

Finally, as he and his future teammates officially secure their future at North Carolina, Henson can't help but take some pride in being part of what will be considered by many the top recruiting class in the country. He knows that there will be pressure, but he and his teammates are ready.

"I think it's the one of the, if not the, best recruiting class in the country," said Henson. "I wouldn't say it puts pressure on us. But, it's expectations and I feel if we work hard and play hard then things are going to work out all right. So far, I think we've dealt with it pretty well."

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