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April 16, 2013Reggie Bullock announced on Tuesday that he will be leaving early after his junior year at North Carolina and will enter his name in the draft.
Bullock is the first player from North Carolina to leave early this year, with James Michael McAdoo still debating on whether or not to leave for the NBA as well. The NCAA deadline is Tuesday, and the NBA deadline is April 28.
Bullock was one of two guards that had a decision to make, as sophomore guard P.J. Hairston decided earlier last week to return for his junior year.
Bullock said on Tuesday:
"It's been a great experience at Carolina and after talking to my family, the coaches and my inner circle of friends, I am ready to take the next step in my career," says Bullock. "I want to play at the next level and will put my name in the NBA Draft this year. I want to thank all of my coaches, teammates and the Carolina fans for their support these past three years. We did some great things that have prepared me to play in the NBA. I know the Tar Heels will have a great year next season."
Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski first reported that Bullock would announce on Tuesday that he's foregoing his final year at UNC for the NBA, and it was made evident even more Tuesday morning from others around the UNC program on Twitter.
P.J. Hairston: "Some things are just meant to be at a certain time for certain people...With that being said, congrats to my bro Reggie Bullock still my brother for life regardless. Follow your dream fam!"
Giovani Bernard: "Congrats my dude. Tell everyone you just #DreamChasing. lol good luck the rest of the way bro. I still need my #35 Bully jersey."
Kendall Marshall: "So excited for Bullock being able to follow his dream. Been waitin on you! Let the journey begin."
John Henson: "Wishing my bro Bullock good luck on his journey to the next level!..great hooper, even better person!"
Right now, Bullock has been seen as a late first round pick to a second round pick in the draft, in what would be considered a weak draft this year.
This year's NBA Draft will be held June 27, and televised on ESPN.
Bullock has had an outstanding three years for the Tar Heels, as he really stepped into his roll of becoming a leader on and off the court this year.
Bullock averaged 13.9 points per game this year, while really stepping up his game in the rebounding area, collecting 6.5 rebounds a game for the Tar Heels, who were shorthanded on size throughout the year.
Bullock was really the most consistent scorer for the Tar Heels all through the year, scoring in double figures in 28 games last year (season high was against Maryland, with 24 points).
"Reggie is such an outstanding young man and a talented basketball player," says UNC head coach Roy Williams.
"He was our most consistent player this season, was productive on both ends of the floor and gave us great leadership. Our hope is that his decision will work out in a very positive manner for Reggie. He has big dreams and we will help him and support him in his efforts to reach those dreams. I'll always enjoy reflecting on Reggie's three seasons as a big part of our program."
Bullock and Hairston were the two outside threats from outside the arc, as Bullock was just behind Hairston in three pointers made, knocking down 88 field goals, while shooting 43.6 percent from outside (Hairston had 89 made field goals from three).
During his junior season, Bullock was able to increase in all areas of the floor, showing how versatile the 6-7 junior was on the court.
With Bullock declaring for the draft, there will certainly be a need for the Tar Heels along the perimeter in 2013-2014.
Whether Hairston returns to the three spot or if J.P. Tokoto will take that spot up, Williams will have some decisions to make this off season.
North Carolina still has a possibility of landing top prospect Andrew Wiggins, who could fill that void at that position. Wiggins is looking to make a decision in the coming weeks prior to the May 15 deadline to sign.
Bullock will be a huge loss for the Tar Heels, especially with his length, durability, and outside shooting ability.
The Tar Heels will have to find a way to get some more production out of other guys.
However, North Carolina still should be one of the favorites to compete for the Atlantic Coast Conference next year with the players they have returning and the impressive crop of recruits coming in, which could be enhanced greatly by the addition of Wiggins.