Carolina's missing ingredient

Updated: February 29, 2012, 5:29 PM ET
By Jay Bilas

Let's be honest. We may have overestimated the North Carolina Tar Heels at the start of the season.

It was easy to look at this roster and anticipate greatness. Returning talent like Harrison Barnes and John Henson, the experience of a deep NCAA tournament run last March, the revelation of a true point guard in Kendall Marshall -- it all seemed to argue in favor of Carolina becoming one of the best college squads since the Heels won it all in 2009.

We may have overstated the expectations, and this current incarnation of UNC may not be as good as that of 2009, but as we recalibrate our expectations we need to remember that our scale is relative. And relative to the rest of the nation's top programs, I think it's clear that the Heels are still one of the top three or four teams in college basketball. And there's still time to improve.

Let's take a step back now and put things in perspective as we discuss Roy Williams' squad and how it stacks up for March.