Power forward Sterling Manley announced a commitment to the North Carolina Tar Heels via Twitter on Sunday, adding to UNC’s strong 2017 recruiting class.
The 6-10, 230-pound recruit from Pickerington Central in Ohio is rated by 247Sports as the 61st-best power forward in the country, the fourth best overall prospect in Ohio and at 252nd in the nation in overall composite score. The three-star recruit fielded several offers from major programs. After declining Ohio State and Nebraska, his final four was Purdue, West Virginia, Xavier and UNC.
He averaged 12 points and eight rebounds last season before suffering a compound fracture in his right leg, which scared off a few potential suitors. The lack of time to develop is likely one reason that a player many see as a four-star talent is graded as a three-star recruit.
The addition gives the Tar Heels the 15th best recruiting class in the nation, and the best in the ACC. They already had a top 20 class before Manley signed on as fellow three-star recruits Andrew Platek and Brandon Huffman are part of that with Jalek Felton serving as the biggest name. The four-star combo guard is graded tops at his position in the nation and as best talent in South Carolina, putting him at 26th nationally.
A strong recruiting class is a big addition to an already strong program. The Tar Heels have made the NCAA Tournament for the last six years, making the National Championship last season but losing to Villanova.