NC State hosts Georgia Tech on Sunday at 6:30 with coverage on ESPNU. The Pack are undefeated at home which will be welcoming, considering their last two road games. Sunday will kick off a three-game homestand for the Wolfpack. What are the keys to the game for NC State to get back on track?
NC State will need to take away Ben Lammers if they are going to win.
Georgia Tech is limited offensively, but they do have one of the better centers in the ACC in Lammers. The 6-10 center leads the Yellow Jackets in PPG, RPG, and BPG. NC State will need a combination of aggressive offensive attacks and physical defense that keeps Lammers from catching the ball deep in the paint. NC State post players need to use Lammers strength of blocking shots aginst him by utilizing ball fakes to get him off the ground. Abu needs to ball-fake to lift Lammers which will give him the blow by to finish. All of NC State big men need to be physical with Lammers on both ends as he has a slight build. As the Pack attacks and bangs with Lammers, he should fatigue and pick up fouls.
The Pack must assert their style of play on the Yellow Jackets.
Georgia Tech wants to slow the game down by limiting possessions to hide their offensive inadequacies. NC State needs to do the opposite by creating transition baskets and turnovers. The past two games the Wolfpack has not gotten out on the break because of live ball turnovers. NC State will need to do a better job of not rushing their passes and stop jumping to complete passes. Guards have developed a bad habit of driving into the lane leaving their feet to try and make a highlight pass, all too often resulting in a turnover. NC State guards need to utilize a jump stop when getting into the paint which will allow them to make better choices. The Wolfpack will win if they control turnovers and efficiently rebound the basketball to ignite the fast break.
The Pack needs to display positive body language.
The best players and teams are one that exudes positive body language and attitudes. NC State cannot keep dropping their heads and shoulders when things go south. In those moments NC State needs to be even more positive with each other to will their way back into the game. Sunday at 6:30 the Pack needs to be up and ready to beat Georgia Tech by doing everything they can to walk away with a win.
Defensively NC State has to create turnovers.
NC State wants to play uptempo but will need to create turnovers as well as stop the Jackets from offensive rebounds. That will take energy and heart to stay in each possession defensively. Georgia Tech has struggled this season on offense; however, NC State cannot give up clean looks to build their confidence. Ben Lammers and Josh Okogie can hurt teams if given good looks as they average 15.4 and 14 PPG respectively. NC State can win by utilizing their athleticism to create turnovers as well as relentlessly pressuring the basketball.
Sunday NC State will be back home which should help them get back on track. Wolfpack Nation our team needs us to fill the PNC with enthusiasm and positive energy. The Wolfpack are a perfect 10-0 at home this season;however, they need to play well to beat a gritty Georgia Tech.