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J.P. Tokoto Picks North Carolina Over Wisconsin

It came down to North Carolina and Wisconsin for J.P. Tokoto. In the end, tradition took priority over location.

Tokoto, a 6-foot-6, 190-pound junior small forward from Menomonee Falls (Wisc.) High, chose Carolina over his state university during a Thursday night press conference.

"I will be a Tar Heel," said Tokoto, the No. 10 small forward in the Class of 2012, according to Rivals. "I'm attending North Carolina and I'll play for Roy Williams.

"It felt like it was home to me," Tokoto added. "Wisconsin's definitely home, but when I got down to North Carolina it felt like something different."

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel first reported the news earlier Thursday.

Tokoto is Carolina's second commit from the Class of 2012, following Marion (Iowa) Linn Mar point guard Marcus Paige. Paige is the No. 5 point guard in the class, per Rivals.

Carolina has done well in the Midwest in the last two years. Freshman Harrison Barnes of Iowa picked the Tar Heels over Duke a year ago and was named a preseason All-America.

"I get the vibe from them that they really care about their players," Tokoto said of the Carolina staff. "I felt like I was at home."

Tokoto, averaging 20.5 points, initially cut his list to eight schools: Carolina, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky, Marquette, Maryland, UCLA and Wisconsin. Yet it came down to just two.

Trevor Trimble, Tokoto's stepfather, said the family weighed a number of factors before making the decision earlier this week.

 

"It was J.P.'s decision," Trimble said before the press conference. "He and his mom and I all agreed that this is the best opportunity for him."

Trimble said the family wanted to get the decision over with before the AAU season begins.

A long, nimble athlete, Trimble has worked hard on his jump shot and is skilled enough to play some point guard if necessary.

Menomonee Falls (11-11) will play at Waukesha South in a WIAA Division 1 regional final on Saturday.

"This is the time where you get another chance to try to take your game to a whole other level because it's the playoffs," Trimble said. "The whole team is ready to go. The boys have worked hard. I think they're going to be able to make a good run."