Wayne Ellington to get No. 22 Jersey in the Rafters

Did someone mention The Rafters?

Over the summer UNC changed the criteria to have a jersey raised into the rafters of the Dean Dome. Previously, only the team-voted MVP from national championship seasons was guaranteed a spot among the legends. The rule has now been changed to include NCAA-voted MOPs (Most Outstanding Player) into what can qualify a player.

That means that Wayne Ellington will now be enshrined in the Dean Dome, but guess who else gets to join the club? Donald Williams from the 1993 championship year, who averaged 25 points a game in each of the Final Four games that season but was beat out by George Lynch who was recognized by the team as MVP for his entire season’s worth of work and leadership.

Also during the summer, UNC changed the rafter rule to include ACC players of the year, meaning Ty Lawson’s No. 5 will also be raised. With the addition of Williams, Lawson and Ellington, the ’93 and ’09 teams will each have three members in the Dean Dome joining Lynch (’93), Eric Montross (’93) and Tyler Hansbrough (’09).

Some other interesting points from the Adam Lucas article on TarHeelBlue:

  • Williams was not told about the honor until the Alumni Game where he admitted to not remembering the first several minutes after finding out about his jersey: “I sat down and I started thinking about where mine would be going,” he says. “I looked up at all those jerseys, and to think that mine would be up there, especially for someone like me who is local, it’s really big for me.”
  • Williams is also trying to break into coaching and will be on the sideline this year for St. Mary’s School in Raleigh, an independent, college-preparatory, girls boarding and day school dedicated to academic excellence and personal achievement for grades 9-12.
  • The ’82 (James Worthy, Sam Perkins and Michael Jordan), ’05 (Sean May, Raymond Felton and Rashad McCants) and ’57 (Lennie Rosenbluth, Tommy Kearns and Pete Brennan) championship teams also have three members in the rafters, but three different non-title teams have four players represented–’76, ’84 and ’94.