Report: Tar Heels reach agreement to sign Kentucky player

Tar Heels Seeking Transfer to Kentucky Adou Thiero

Since the Kentucky forward opened the transfer window three weeks ago, North Carolina has been closely monitoring Adou Thiero. The Tar Heels are now pursuing at full speed.

According to those familiar with the matter, UNC staff members have told Thiero and his family that they hope to sign the 6-foot-8, 222-pound sophomore this offseason, regardless of the choices made by the team’s current roster.

As ESPN first revealed on Friday, the Tar Heels are among the five finalists for Thiero, along with Pittsburgh, Indiana, Kentucky, and Arkansas.


During the Wildcats’ 2023–24 campaign, Thiero started 19 games and averaged 7.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks. In terms of rebounds and blocks, those statistics were second on the squad. After finishing 23-10 overall, Kentucky lost in the NCAA Tournament’s opening round and fired head coach Calipari this offseason.

Thiero’s sophomore campaign was capped with season-highs of 16 points and 13 rebounds against Kansas on November 14. The season included a month-long absence due to a back injury sustained in late December. In a loss to Gonzaga on February 10, he scored 15 points with a season-high six made shots. On December 16, in a UK victory over the Tar Heels (87–83), Thiero recorded seven points, four blocks, and two assists.


Adou has accomplished some great things, but he’s the type of guy that likes to mix things up. Late in the season, Calipari noted on his radio show, “He’s gotten so much better.” “Every task that lies ahead of him and that he must accomplish is dependent on effort. Entering the gym and making the commitment. He has access to everything. He has thus improved greatly.”

Thiero’s late growth surge has been the main driver of his development. He committed to Kentucky late in the recruiting cycle, after developing into a 6-foot-5 senior at Leetsdale (Pa.) Quaker Valley. He is regarded as the No. 20 combo guard and No. 138 overall prospect in the 2022 class. After coming to Lexington, that expansion has persisted.


In February, Calipari said, “He’s not even what he was a year ago.” “I continue to believe that he will be 6-9.” He is most likely 6-7, if not somewhat larger today. He’ll be six or nine by the time next year gets around.”

According to 247Sports, Thiero is the 18th-ranked player on the transfer site.

According to Travis Branham, national basketball analyst for 247Sports, Thiemo has “developed tremendously at Kentucky and has particularly intrigued NBA scouts.” Branham stated this last month. “One year from now, we could be talking about Thiero as … a first-round NBA draft pick.”
Since Thiero entered the portal on March 28, other schools have reportedly gotten in touch with him, including Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Gonzaga, Indiana, Miami, Ohio State, Ole Miss, Oregon, Pittsburgh, and Texas A&M.

On March 30, Thiero released the following statement: “I feel that it is best to test the professional waters at this time, putting my name in the 2024 NBA Draft, while leaving all of my options open, including a return to Kentucky, after speaking with Coach Calipari. For their support over the past two years, I would want to thank the supporters, my coaches, and my teammates. I’m excited to go through this process and figure out what my next course of action is.”
















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