2009 National Champions

Staff WriterApril 7, 2009 

NORTH CAROLINA TAR HEELS

50 TYLER HANSBROUGH

F l 6-9 l 250 l SENIOR l POPLAR BLUFF, MO.

The individual records kept falling in a final season that delivered the team championship Hansbrough craved. Injuries kept him on the bench for four of the Tar Heels' first seven games. He surpassed Phil Ford as UNC's career scoring leader in December, and with a free throw against Radford in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, he replaced Duke's J.J. Redick as the ACC's all-time scorer. Some in the national media said Hansbrough was "overexposed" this season, but if he exposed anything, it was his determination to return to the Final Four. The first player since 1985 to earn consensus first-team All-America honors three times, Hansbrough ensured that his No. 50 will hang from UNC's rafters.

1 MARCUS GINYARD

G/F l 6-5 l 218 SENIOR l ALEXANDRIA, VA.

To call Ginyard a "role player" wouldn't do him justice -- he can fill so many roles. He missed virtually the entire season with a foot injury and received a medical redshirt. The Tar Heels missed his leadership and his defense on the perimeter. He was the winner of UNC's defensive player of the year award as a sophomore and junior. In the past, he has played small forward, served as backup point guard and even as an undersized power forward. "You can't touch everything he does for our team [when healthy]," coach Roy Williams once said.

40 MIKE COPELEND

F l 6-7 l 235 SENIOR l WINSTON-SALEM

"Cope" had played in 16 games entering the Final Four, adding a tenacity under the boards when the front line needed a breather.

11 LARRY DREW II

G l 6-1 l 180 l FRESHMAN l ENCINO, CALIF.

He bided his time behind junior point guard Ty Lawson and senior sub Bobby Frasor, but Drew offered glimpses of potential stardom. Against Radford in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament, with Lawson sidelined, Drew played a season-high 19 minutes and had five assists and only one turnover.

13 WILL GRAVES

F/G l 6-6 l 245 l SOPHOMORE l GREENSBORO

He boasted the team's best 3-point shooting percentage (45.2) entering last year's Final Four. This season was cut short after he was suspended for an undisclosed reason on Feb. 3.

32 ED DAVIS

F l 6-10 l 215 l FRESHMAN I RICHMOND, VA.

He could be called "Efficient Ed." The athletic forward made the most of his minutes while playing about half of each game. An All-ACC Freshman Team selection, Davis averaged 6.6 points and 6.6 rebounds going into the Final Four. He was a presence in the paint at both ends, a shot blocker who also won the Tar Heels' defensive player of the game award in the first three tournament games.

22 WAYNE ELLINGTON

G l 6-4 l 200 l JUNIOR I WYNNEWOOD, PA.

After two seasons in which he seemed content to fire from the outside, Ellington was determined this season to replace his reputation as "shooter" with "all-around scorer." He drew attention at the beginning of his season for a slow start after testing the NBA waters after the 2008 season. But soft-spoken Ellington caught fire at just the right time for the Tar Heels. In the eight games heading into the Final Four, Ellington shot 55.3 percent from the field, including 45.7 percent from 3-point range. With point guard Ty Lawson sitting out the first game of the NCAA Tournament, he poured in 25 points against Radford, followed by a 23-point performance against LSU. He emerged as a more outspoken veteran, and his revived sharpshooting gave the Tar Heels a shot they needed.

24 JUSTIN WATTS

G l 6-4 l 205 l FRESHMAN l DURHAM

A three-time All-PAC-Six player at Durham Jordan, Watts saw limited action in 26 games and scored 17 points on a team stocked with experienced veterans.

44 TYLER ZELLER

F l 7-0 l 220 l FRESHMAN I WASHINGTON, IND.

Carolina's younger Tyler impressed early, scoring 18 points in the season-opening win over Penn. His promising rookie season was blighted when he broke his left wrist Nov. 18 and missed 23 games. He returned to make his mark, grabbing a season-high eight rebounds in the NCAA opener against Radford.

21 DEON THOMPSON

F l 6-8 l 245 l JUNIOR I TORRANCE, CALIF.

With Tyler Hansbrough the dominant player in the post, Thompson played a supporting role at forward. He averaged 10.7 points on a 49.8 percent shooting touch and ranked third among the Tar Heels in rebounding with 5.8 recoveries per game.

14 DANNY GREEN

F/G l 6-6 l 245 l SENIOR l NORTH BABYLON, N.Y.

A year ago, his "Jump Around" gyrations before each home game became a YouTube favorite. As one of the nation's top sixth men in 2007-08 and as a starter this season, his performances have given Tar Heels fans plenty to dance about. The versatile player emerged as a "stat stuffer" who scores, blocks shots, grabs rebounds, makes steals and helps handle the ball. In the South Regional semifinals and final, his highlights included hitting 11 of 20 shots and scoring 31 points in the two games.

4 BOBBY FRASOR

G l 6-3 l 210 l SENIOR I BLUE ISLAND, ILL.

He came back after missing most of last season because of a torn knee ligament. A savvy player who eventually wants to go into coaching, Frasor supplied stability in a backup role at point guard when Lawson was out. Before the Final Four, he had a 2.1 assists/turnover ratio while averaging about 17 minutes per game.

5 TY LAWSON

G l 5-11 l 195 l JUNIOR l CLINTON, MD.

Everybody knew Lawson was the engine that made North Carolina run. That was confirmed when he was sidelined because of an injury to his right big toe. In his absence, Carolina was still good, just slower. UNC's fastbreak turns into a blur with the speedy point guard in control. And just how valuable was he? Well, he won ACC player of the year honors on a team with the 2008 national player of the year Tyler Hansbrough. He also swept the NCAA Regional most outstanding player trophy. Going into the Final Four, his assists/turnover ratio was 3.5, the best single-season mark in ACC history. With quick, darting penetration, he could break down any defense, get to the hoop or hit the open man when defenses collapsed on him. His long-range shooting also proved accurate.

2 MARC CAMPBELL

G l 5-11 l 175 JUNIOR l WILMINGTON

15 J.B. TANNER

G l 6-0 l 185 SENIOR l HENDERSONVILLE

30 JACK WOOTEN

G l 6-2 l 190 SENIOR l BURLINGTON

35 PATRICK MOODY

F l 6-4 l 195 SENIOR l ASHEVILLE

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