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North Carolina star sheds 45 pounds prepping for breakout year

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UNC center Kennedy Meeks drops 45 pounds, prepares to dominate (©GettyImages)
UNC center Kennedy Meeks drops 45 pounds, prepares to dominate (©GettyImages).

This is a weight-loss success story.

But the subject isn't your typical middle-aged man or woman trying to get their weight back to a healthy, manageable state.

No, this is about Kennedy Meeks, the North Carolina big man who is considerably less big after reigning in his weight this offseason by losing about 45 pounds, according to CBS Sports.

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Dramatic Loss

The 6-foot-9 center went from about 320 pounds to around 275, according to Scout.com, and is planning on losing even more. His goal is to get down to about 265 to 270 pounds.

Meeks played well as a freshman last year, earning ACC All-Freshman Team honors. Despite being in considerably less shape, he averaged 7.6 points and 6.1 rebounds in only 16.3 minutes per game.

If he could stay on the court longer, Meeks would be as sure a bet for a double-double as their is in college basketball.

Scout.com reports that Meeks threw down a windmill dunk during practice last week — something unimaginable when he was clanging beneath the rim at more than 300 pounds.

Frank Kaminsky: The best college has to offer?

Wisconsin senior Frank Kaminsky returned to college despite being a possible lottery pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, after the Badgers' unlikely run to the Final Four last season.

Now some are arguing that is the best returning college basketball player.

That's the opinion of Seth Davis, a college basketball expert, who believes Kaminsky's 7-foot-frame, as well as his ability to hit outside shots, will make him one of college's top players.

Kaminsky averaged 13.9 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, with a career-high 43 points against North Dakota in November.

Of course, a few college newcomers will likely make a bigger splash than the gangly Frank the Tank - freshman who immediately come to mind include Duke center Jahlil Okafor, SMU guard Emmanuel Mudiay, Kansas forward Cliff Alexander and Arizona forward Stanley Johnson.

However, when it comes to players with experience, no one has quite as much promise as Kaminsky.

College coach receives kidney 

A University of Pikeville men's basketball coach owes his life to his wife and her family for a second time, according to the Kentucky Lexington Herald-Leader.

Back around Christmas, head coach Kelly Wells found out he needed his second kidney transplant in two years, due to a condition called Berger's disease. 

The 43-year-old had his first kidney transplant in 2004, which his wife, Shawne, provided. This time it was Shawne's younger brother, Brock Walter, who volunteered to give up his free kidney.

On June 30, Wells underwent surgery, which was succesful.

Walter himself is a former assistant basketball coach in Boyd County, in Kentucky. He is now the Superintendent of Boyd County schools.

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