canada africa partner reservation Was the UNC transfer portal target rumored to be leaning towards the Tar Heels?

Was the UNC transfer portal target rumored to be leaning towards the Tar Heels?


Things are looking good for Hubert Davis and the North Carolina Tar Heels as UNC basketball eyes build on earning a No. 1 seed in March Madness, only to fall short with a loss to Alabama in the Sweet 16. Since then, however, they have quality work and made sure they don’t go anywhere.

Even though Armando Bacot and Cormac Ryan are ineligible and leaving, and with Harrison Ingram likely gone as well, the Heels should still feel good about the roster. RJ Davis returns to Chapel Hill for another year, Seth Trimble removed his name from the transfer portal, Cade Tyson comes through the portal from Belmont and five-star freshmen Ian Jackson and Drake Powell enter the fray.

Still, Davis and North Carolina don’t seem done yet. Most have UNC looking for another big to pair with Jalen Washington to help offset the loss of Bacot. But another player the Tar Heels have recently connected is Illinois forward Coleman Hawkins, who spent four years in Champaign.

And Hawkins may (or may not) have sent a message to Hubert Davis and the Heels on social media.

It all started when a UNC basketball fan posted a jersey Photoshop of Hawkins in the Carolina Blue Digs, prompting the wing to comment, “Oh wow” with a laughing emoji.

Where things really got interesting, however, was when another X/Twitter user replied that the “shade of blue” wasn’t his color. Hawkins responded by saying he thought it really brought out his eyes.

Does popping his eyes have a connection to the Tar Heels? Is Hawkins teasing that Chapel Hill could be his next destination? Or is this a troll job?

Honestly, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle. There’s already been mention of a possible Hawkins-to-UNC connection, so we know there’s some interest in that. That’s not just the former Illinois standout playing with North Carolina fans for no reason. But at the same time, shortly after this conversation, he made a similarly coy comment with a Louisville fan account as a forward. asked to see the jersey swap for the Cardinals.

Ultimately, it feels like Hawkins is simply enjoying the process of being coveted in the transfer portal, while also possibly gauging the reactions of different fanbases. That is usually harmless, but also says nothing about where he may or may not lean.

As for what Hawkins could mean for UNC basketball, it could fit together seamlessly. He and Jae’Lyn Withers, who coincidentally came over from Louisville in 2023, could join forces to essentially replace Ingram as a versatile wing. Hawkins averaged 12.1 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.1 blocks per game while shooting 36.9% from 3-point range with Illinois this past season, which is somewhat is in line with what we saw from Ingram.

There is certainly nothing definitive about what Hawkins had to say. However, this is certainly a situation to keep an eye on as North Carolina continues to actively pursue the portal.

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