Armando Bacot says he made $2 million-plus while at UNC through NIL ::

Armando Bacot says he made $2 million-plus while at UNC through NIL ::

Former University of North Carolina big man Armando Bacot claimed he made more than $2 million in NIL money while playing for the Tar Heels.

Bacot made the revelation during Tuesday’s episode of the “Run Your Race” podcast, hosted by former UNC player Theo Pinson and A.J. Richardson.

“I’m saying that humbly though, but that speaks on the brand of Carolina because if I didn’t go to Carolina, doing deals with TurboTax – all those people – they wouldn’t do it with me, but like, I go to Carolina so I’m able to.”

Bacot offered recommendations for incoming recruits considering whether to attend UNC.

“When you go to Carolina and you handle [your] business, you go out there and play, somewhat be marketable and stuff like that … it pays,” Bacot said. “I could never say a bad word about Carolina and everything because I got life-changing money.”

Bacot, 24, signed an Exhibit 10 contract with the Utah Jazz after going unselected in last week’s NBA Draft. He will have the opportunity to compete for a roster spot on the Jazz.

The Jazz also selected Duke rival Kyle Filipowski with the 32nd overall pick in the second round of the 2024 NBA Draft.

In Tuesday’s podcast, Bacot also said he nearly transferred from UNC after his sophomore season with the retirement of legendary head coach Roy Williams.

“Going into my junior year, it’s funny because I was going to transfer after my sophomore year,” Bacot said. “I had that great year but like coach [Roy] Williams had left.”

“Remember, he had said he was leaving on April Fools’ [Day], but I kind of had an idea before. I had to keep it quiet. Nobody else knew.”

The program gave Bacot a heads up on Williams’ pending retirement, hoping to keep him in Chapel Hill and build around him.

“I was a building block for that next team because they knew I was going to leave,” Bacot said. “So, I was going to go to VCU, which is crazy to think

“So then, coach [Hubert] Davis is named the coach and coach Davis recruited me, that was the guy who always had a hand on my shoulder when I was down my freshman year, always encouraging me. So, when coach Davis said he was coming, it was a wrap. I knew I was going to stay at Carolina.”

Bacot helped lead the Tar Heels to a championship appearance in 2022. UNC fell short against the Kansas Jayhawks in the title game. However, the Tar Heels knocked out rival Duke in the Final Four, which was the last game MIke Krzyzewski coached. Bacot said he was “stressed” about having to wait leading up to the legendary 2022 Final Four game against Duke.

“[We were] anxious as hell, like, bro, can this already hurry up?” Bacot said in anticipation of the Final Four game. “Even talking to some of the Duke players, they felt the same way because it’s a build up and you know everything is at stake … all the bragging rights and rivalry because Duke and UNC [had] never matched up in the tournament ever.”

UNC missed the 2023 NCAA tournament after finishing the season with a 20-13 record.

In the 2023-24, Bacot averaged 14.5 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. During his final season in Chapel Hill, Bacot set the UNC record for most rebounds and double-doubles. UNC made it to the Sweet 16 before getting eliminated by Alabama.