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UNC's Williams talks injuries, NBA draft

Tuesday morning, North Carolina basketball coach Roy Williams joined new football coach Larry Fedora in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl Challenge championship, where the duo finished 6-under par, tied for eighth place among participating schools, and picked up $20,000 in scholarships.

Then that night, they made their latest Tar Heel Tour stop at NewBridge Bank Park in Greensboro, N.C.

Some of Williams’ topics covered the same territory as previous Rams Club events in Chapel Hill, N.C., and in Charlotte, N.C.,: the need for wing Reggie Bullock and forward James Michael McAdoo to improve; the fact that the Tar Heels are always on the lookout to add good players, but that next year’s team is likely set.

But here are a couple of other tidbits, according to this story from Greg Barnes at InsideCarolina:

* Guard Dexter Strickland, who tore his ACL at Virginia Tech on January 19, is right on schedule with his rehab and should be ready to play next season.

“I think that when school starts in the fall, he’ll be running and doing some things,’’ Williams said, according to the website. “ And I really feel that when we start our conditioning program, which is usually around Sept. 15, it might be a little difficult for Dexter to do the whole thing, but I think by the time practice starts he should be able to go, too.”

Guard Leslie McDonald, who also needed knee surgery before the season after tearing an ACL during a summer league game, should also be ready to go after next fall, too, after redshirting 2011-12.

“He probably would have played the last 10 or 12 games and would have been able to do that,’’ Williams said. “So he’s doing fine. He practiced with us down the stretch. We let him have a day off every four or five days just to make sure that we weren’t doing too much.”

* Williams said he hoped to have the hiring process for his vacant assistant coaching slot wrapped up “pretty soon.” He said previously that the position would be filled by a person with Tar Heels ties, and that 14 former players had inquired about the opening.

* Williams said UNC will have four players -- Tyler Zeller, and underclassmen John Henson, Harrison Barnes and Kendall Marshall -- chosen in the first round of the NBA draft, “and every one of them deserves to be.”

He brushed aside talk from fans about the players needing to return to school in order to get a great college experience.

“I’m not buying that and neither are you,” Williams told the crowd, according to Inside Carolina. “Come on, Marvin Williams played one year, was the second pick in the draft, signed his name once and made 13 million dollars. Don’t give me all of that crap about how they should have stayed.

“Every dadgum one of you went to college to get a better job and make more money. That’s what those kids are able to do.”

Follow Robbi Pickeral on Twitter at @bylinerp.